Defense Triumphs in Hip Dysplasia Claim Despite Compelling Damages
Andrew Garson successfully defended a local teaching hospital and its former employee, a pediatric resident, in the most compelling emotional circumstances. These claims were brought on behalf of a 4 year old child with hip dysplasia, a malformation of the hip joint, who had undergone multiple surgeries, extended rehabilitation and has a permanent limp and activity limitations. It was argued she would develop disabling arthritis in the joint, requiring multiple hip replacements beginning in early adulthood. Her attorney, one of the most prominent litigators in the nation with numerous multimillion dollar verdicts, argued that this condition should have been diagnosed at the time of the child’s birth. Plaintiff’s theory was that this abnormality developed in the womb, was present but unrecognized at birth, and if timely diagnosed, the child’s extensive injuries, future pain and ambulatory problems would have been averted. At trial, counsel aggressively attacked the credibility and knowledge of Garson’s client, attempting to demonstrate the resident was not adequately trained or competent to recognize this condition and failed to properly examine the infant assigned to her care. It was the defendants’ position that this condition was not in fact present at birth, but developed later as the infant matured. Therefore, there was no negligence attributable to his clients. As the trial progressed, these claims were dismissed. A rewarding outcome in light of the potential damages exposure and sympathetic nature of the case.