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  • Medical Malpractice – Failure to Timely Diagnose and Treat Liposarcoma Causes Permanent Injury: Compagner v. Holland Hospital et al.

Sommers Schwartz attorney Robert Sickels filed a medical malpractice action on behalf of a man with a tumor that grew to 15 pounds because of a radiologist’s failure to accurately report a CT Scan and because of his primary care facility’s failure to timely diagnose and treat a tumor called a Liposarcoma.  

According to the complaint, the plaintiff received his primary care at Lakeshore Health Partners for several years. In 2014, a head and neck CT Angiogram was ordered to investigate an episode of vertigo. A scout film revealed a large opacity in the lower left side of the plaintiff’s chest, but the radiology report failed to mention this abnormality. 

Two years later, the plaintiff returned with complaints of shortness of breath. Despite the patient’s 30-year history of smoking, hypertension, and hyperlipidemia, the defendant physicians did not order a chest x-ray or obtain an oxygen saturation level. The plaintiff returned for a series of appointments during which his medication was adjusted. Even though he complained of worsening symptoms, no diagnostic testing for lung pathology was ordered.

In 2017, the plaintiff was diagnosed with COPD and dyspnea on exertion. He was prescribed an inhaler that did not improve his symptoms. He continued to periodically report for physical examinations, complaining of continued shortness of breath and worsening symptoms. Still, no chest x-rays were ordered. 

Six years after the initial CT scan, the defendants noted an abnormal oxygen saturation level and ordered chest x-rays which revealed a huge abnormal density on both sides of the chest. bilaterally. A CT of the chest revealed a large mediastinal mass. A biopsy report showed the tissue was positive for Liposarcoma. 

By this point, the tumor was 15 pounds, too large for radiation therapy. The plaintiff was taken in for surgery to remove the tumor and suffered numerous complications. Additional surgeries were required, and the plaintiff was put on a feeding tube. He can no longer work and will likely remain on the feeding tube for the remainder of his life. 

The lawsuit alleges that the defendants were professionally negligent in failing to timely diagnose and treat the Liposarcoma. Due to the negligent delay in diagnosis, the plaintiff could not be treated with radiation therapy and suffered multiple surgical complications during surgical removal of the tumor, including perforations of his esophagus and stomach and damage to the vagal nerve. The plaintiff has suffered unnecessary pain and suffering, respiratory impairment, and permanent loss of the ability to work. 

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