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Counsel That You Can Trust & Depend On


Guy DiMartino Oct. 31, 2014

Michigan City Indiana medical malpractice lawyer discusses penis amputation medical malpractice case.

  • The plaintiff saw his family doctor for burning and pain at the end of his penis and the doctor prescribed a cream.

  • When the symptoms didn't go away, the plaintiff was referred to a urologist.

  • The urologist recommended a circumcision.

  • When the urologist was in surgery, he saw that the head of the penis looked like cauliflower, which is a sign of cancer.

  • The urologist removed about an inch of the penis while the plaintiff was still under without waking the guy up and getting additional informed consent.

  • The remainder of the man's penis was taken off by another doctor at a later date because of cancer.

The gist of the plaintiff's case was that the doctor should have stopped the procedure, waited for him to wake-up, and go through the informed consent procedure before removing the piece of penis. Although, the plaintiff was technically right, the doctor allegedly saved the guys life.

Lessons Learned

There are two big lessons that we can all learn from this case. First, medical malpractice cases in Northwest Indiana and throughout the nation are difficult enough. Even though, a doctor, nurse, hospital, may have done something technically wrong, it is the spirit of the law – not the letter of the law that matters. Second, in order to be successful in a medical malpractice claim, the patient must have a riveting story of betrayal. There was nothing compelling about the patient's story in this case.

I screen dozens and dozens of potential cases before accepting one Northwest Indiana medical malpractice case. In many of the cases that I screen, the doctor, nurse or hospital may have done something wrong, but in order to be successful in a medical malpractice case, the victim has to show much more than a technical wrong. The victim's story has to be compelling enough to show that the medical system failed the patient and be moving enough for a jury to render a verdict in favor of the victim.

Based on the limited facts reported in the Insurance Journal, I don't know how in the world I could have stood up before six jurors and argued that this doctor did something wrong, when the guy's penis was covered with cancer, the guy ended up having his entire penis amputated, and the guy is still alive. I'm sure the defense attorney in this medical malpractice case made his defendant doctor look like a hero – not a villain.

Indiana Medical Malpractice law is complex. If you have any questions about a Northwest Indiana medical malpractice claim, call our office at (219) 874-4878 or request a free copy of my book explaining the medical malpractice claims process.