$7.15 million Professional Negligence in Surgery and Post-Surgery Care | Sacramento County

Attorneys at the Office of Bruce G. Fagel and Associates negotiated a settlement of $7,150,000 on behalf of an infant who now suffers severe cerebral palsy and developmental delays due to injuries resulting from professional negligence during and after heart surgery to implant a pacemaker. The defendants in this case were a cardiac surgeon, anesthesiologist and neonatalogist. The cardiac surgeon was negligent for not making sure the proper equipment was in the operating room, leading to a 1½ hour delay, and for allowing the anesthesiologist to keep the plaintiff under anesthesia during this delay rather than re-scheduling the surgery. The anesthesiologist failed to recognize and treat the patient’s low blood pressure during the four hours of surgery, while the neonatalogist was negligent for not recognizing and treating the plaintiff’s hypotension during the surgery and during the first eight hours of his stay in the Neonatal Intensive care Unit after the surgery. As a result of the defendants’ negligence, the plaintiff suffered hypoxia and hypovolemia, leading to significant brain injuries. The plaintiff now requires 24-hour LVN care from a licensed agency, and will likely need this care for the rest of his life.

All three defendants stated their actions were within the standard of care. The neonatalogist claimed that the anesthesiologist and cardiac surgeon were both negligent and that the entire brain injury occurred during the surgery as a result of acute blood loss that was not effectively treated. He claimed that no injuries occurred after the surgery, and that the anesthesiologist and cardiac surgeon’s actions were the sole cause of the plaintiff’s damages. However, Dr. Fagel and his associates were able to prove that all three defendants were indeed liable and negotiated a settlement of over $7,000,000 to compensate for projected loss of earnings and to cover the cost of the plaintiff’s past and future medical needs for the rest of his life.