Anesthesia Error

Prior to trial, WRSMH Of Counsel Brielle Goldfaden and attorney Jason Rubin obtained a $500,000.00 settlement in a medical malpractice action involving an elderly woman who sustained a tracheal laceration during an intubation.

Plaintiff, 81 years old at the time, was admitted to the defendant hospital for a cholecystectomy. The defendant anesthesiologist required several attempts before being able to successfully intubate plaintiff for the surgery. However, this difficulty was not documented by the anesthesiologist. The surgery was uneventful but, several hours later, plaintiff began to exhibit subcutaneous emphysema in the chest and neck. A chest x-ray confirmed subcutaneous emphysema but a surgeon was not called to evaluate plaintiff for several hours thereafter. A CT scan was performed which demonstrated a tracheal laceration. Plaintiff thereafter underwent emergency surgery to repair the tracheal tear.

We claimed that the anesthesiologist tried to cover up the tracheal tear by not documenting that the intubation took several attempts - this was only mentioned in later notes by the surgeon. Additionally, we claimed that there was a failure to timely diagnose and treat the laceration, which caused unnecessary pain and suffering to plaintiff.

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