Motor vehicle

Nogueras v. LaBarbera
Medical Malpractice-Diagnosis of Myocardial Infraction
Suffolk County

Miriam Nogueras, indiv. and
result of heart failure. Plaintiff also argued that Defendant was negligent for taking only one blood pressure reading and for basing his reading. Pltfs. Expert contended that the prescription of Calan was contraindicated in the face of left ventricular failure and that the combination of Calan and Corgard lowered decedent’s heart rate and blood pressure, COURT: Suffolk Supreme
decedent, who took his own blood pressure, told her on the morning of his visit with Deft PLAINTIFF:
contended that a nurse at decedent’s job took ATTORNEYS: James Duffy of Kramer,
his blood pressure on the morning of his death, and that his pressure was again quite DEFENSE:
David W. Brand of Brand &
suffering from left ventricular failure or heart failure at his office visit. He argued that FACTS & ALLIGATIONS: Decedent, a 59-
decedent’s congestion was caused by a cold or bronchitis. Defendant denied that decedent exchange, presented to Deft: internists on had orthopnea, which appears in advanced 11/14/87 with complaints of occasional chest stages of congestive heart failure, because coughing and wheezing at night. He also told Defendant that he used two pillows to sleep at shortness of breath. He contended that in a case of classic orthopnea, the patient sleeps cardiac infraction in 1977 and angina. His in an almost upright position, requiring more previous doctor had prescribed Corgard, a than two pillows. Defendant also claimed that diagnostic for uncontrolled hypertension. He therapeutic for patients at risk of a mild that if decedent had presented with heart INJURIES & DAMAGES:
failure, that condition would have been the diagnosed atherosclerotic heart disease and cause of his death. Heart failure was not uncontrolled hypertension and prescribed by indicated as a cause of death on the hospital record or in decedent’s death certificate. told decedent to return in 2 weeks with his medical records. Decedent died 2 days later Plaintiff admitted that an acute anterior wall of an acute anterior wall myocardial infarction. myocardial infarction was a contributing factor in decedent’s death, but argued that the infarction was caused by stasis in a coronary negligently failed to diagnose left ventricular artery as a result of very low blood pressure, failure at decedent’s office visit. She contended that the fact that decedent was contended that decedent suffered from heart using two pillows at night was evidence of block, a delayed conduction of electricity in orthopnea, or congestion while reclining a the heart, resulting from the combination of decedent had heart block and noted that it
was not mentioned in the hospital record or on
decedent’s death certificate. Deft’s expert
testified that in his 37 years of practice, he
had never seen a patient suffer a heart attack
as a result of low blood pressure. Decedent,
at age 59 at his death, left a wife and three
children, two of them adults. Demonstrative
evidence: blackboard drawings; EKG tracings,
Offer $100,000: demand $1,000,000 plus
excess coverage; amount asked of Jury:
$2,900,000 ($150,000 for household services:
$500,000 for lost earnings; $750,000 for pain
and suffering: $400,000 to each of two
children for loss of parental guidance;
$600,000 to the third Child).

6 hours

Dr. Ernestos Jonas,
EXPERT: Dr.Charles Bertrand
, Chief


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