Following a multi-week trial, a Baltimore County jury needed less than twenty minutes to return with a defense verdict on behalf of a prominent partner with a large, statewide urology group. The wrongful death lawsuit was brought by the family of Alta Trimble who passed away following a radical right nephroureterectomy procedure at Franklin Square Hospital. The procedure was necessary due to our client's discovery of an aggressive form of transitional cell cancer that did not respond to more conservative treatment. While acknowledging that the procedure involved risk as a result of Ms. Trimble's advanced age, large body habitus, and a myriad of other health issues, Plaintiffs alleged that the physician made numerous mistakes due to poor surgical technique, resulting in several intraoperative injuries, including a perforated cecum which was not discovered until several days after Ms. Trimble's initial surgery.
In defense of the claims, Jonathan Cusson and Cullen Casey contended that while some known difficulties were encountered during surgery, the procedure was performed with great care and all necessary steps were taken to guard against any surgical complications. Mr. Casey and Mr. Cusson also argued that, following her surgery, Ms. Trimble was managed appropriately, she began to improve and there was no indication that she had any post-surgical complications. It was not until approximately six days following surgery that it was discovered that Ms. Trimble had developed a bowel perforation in the cecum which was quickly addressed by the physicians at FSH. Defense experts testified at trial that Ms. Trimble's perforated cecum was a recognized complication during a nephroureterectomy – especially given Ms. Trimble's age and body habitus. The experts also explained that the perforation likely resulted from a thermal injury or retractor that would not have been noticeable during the procedure. Following closing arguments, the jury quickly returned to the courtroom with a defense verdict in favor of our clients.
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