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$1,500,000 Recovery in Wrongful Death Cardiac Catheterization Case

Daryl L. Zaslow of Eichen Crutchlow Zaslow, LLP (Edison, Red Bank and Toms River), obtained a $1,500,000 settlement on behalf of the Estate of a 65-year-old woman who died from a delay in diagnosing and repairing a retroperitoneal hematoma sustained during a cardiac catheterization and percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI). At the time of her death on March 11, 2011, Plaintiff left surviving an adult son.

On 8 March 2011 Plaintiff was 65 years of age and had a history of hypertension and hyperlipidemia, was transferred to Morristown Memorial Hospital for cardiac catheterization and percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) in the setting of an acute coronary syndrome reflected by chest discomfort at rest and ECG changes representing anterior wall myocardial ischemia. Defendant, an interventional cardiologist, performed PCI. Plaintiff’s experts maintained that Defendant departed from the standard of care by failing to appropriately recognize that Plaintiff was suffering from a large right retroperitoneal hematoma, by failing to institute appropriate medical therapy, by failing to perform (or a have an associate perform) a percutaneous catheter-based closure of the bleeding vascular site, and by failing to obtain timely surgery consultation when the condition of the Plaintiff worsened. As a result of these departures, Mr. Zaslow argued that his client steadily deteriorated, lapsed into shock with multi-organ system failure, suffered and unnecessarily died on 11 March 2011.

The Defendant maintained that hematoma was a risk of the procedure and the Defendant’s decision to wait for the bleed to tamponade was an exercise of medical judgment.