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  • Surgical Error – Loss of Left Arm Function – Caver v. Henry Ford Health System

Sommers Schwartz attorney Kenneth Watkins filed a medical malpractice action on behalf of a 62-year-old woman who underwent elbow replacement surgery and, due to a surgical error, now has virtually no functional use of her left arm.

The lawsuit asserts the plaintiff, who was left-hand dominant, suffered from rheumatoid arthritis in her elbow and sought treatment with the defendant doctor, a board-certified orthopedic surgeon. She ultimately underwent a left total elbow arthroplasty and excision of a left dorsal hand mass at defendant Henry Ford West Bloomfield Hospital.

The orthopedic malpractice complaint alleges the defendant negligently used a surgical technique that caused the plaintiff to sustain severe injuries to her left elbow, arm, and hand, including permanent damage to her ulnar nerve. The plaintiff claims that had the proper surgical technique been used, including avoiding damage to the ulnar nerve by suturing through it, she would have most likely not suffered any permanent damage at all. The lawsuit further alleges that although the plaintiff has since undergone additional repair surgeries on her left arm and elbow, she continues to suffer from permanent disability, including the inability to write legibly, difficulty operating a vehicle, and the inability to cook and clean.

The complaint also includes a physician malpractice claim against the resident doctor who assisted the defendant during the plaintiff’s surgery.

The action is pending in Oakland County, Michigan Circuit Court.

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