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Plaintiff v. Hospital and OBGYN

S/New York – Date of Verdict May 17, 2022 – $600,000 for loss of an ovary

The infant plaintiff complained of abdominal pain and was brought to her local ED. Thinking appendicitis, a CT scan was performed that showed an 8cm complex right ovarian cyst. An ultrasound was performed that showed at that time, there was still blood flow to ovary. The hospital did not have any pediatric surgeon or OB/GYN available to consult with the infant plaintiff. The emergency room attending then called the mother’s private OB/GYN who delivered the infant plaintiff. A conversation was had between the ED attending and the OB/GYN and a decision was made to discharge the infant plaintiff to the OB/GYN’s care. The following morning the infant plaintiff presented to the OB/GYN who informed her that he does not care for children and referred her to another adult OB/GYN. The plaintiff’s mother then sought a pediatric surgeon. By the time she received the appointment with the pediatric surgeon, the ovary torsed, blood supply was cut off and the ovary needed to be removed.

Plaintiff contended that the hospital admitted that it was aware that a mass of that size had a high risk of torsion and that the infant should have been admitted and transferred to a hospital that could perform surgery before the ovary torsed and that the plaintiff was never informed of the high risk of torsion or need of emergency surgery. Defendant hospital maintained that they discharged her to the care of a surgeon and that they did inform the plaintiff’s mother that because of the large size of the mass her ovary could torse and they she only had hours to get into an operating room or she would lose the ovary. Defendant OB/GYN died before depositions, but through his counsel, maintained that his client did not decide to discharge and that he referred to another adult OB/GYN who could perform surgery. The defendants also alleged there were no damages as a result of the loss of an ovary and any damages are speculative.

Plaintiff alleged loss of an ovary as well as the decreased number of set eggs is a damage and would reduce her future fertility and increase her risk of need of infertility treatment.

Jury found unanimously in favor of the infant plaintiff.