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Toe Amputation Nursing Malpractice Lawsuit

Rich v. MedStar Health Visiting Nurse Association, Inc., et al.

Cast on footThis bed sore toe amputation malpractice lawsuit was filed by a man in Baltimore County after his toes is amputated due to the nursing staff allegedly failing to properly care for the man's wounds. It was filed in Health Claims Arbitration on May 1, 2017, and it is the 204th medical malpractice case filed in Maryland this year.

Summary of Plaintiff's Allegations

Plaintiff goes to the Integrated Wound Healing Center at Franklin Square Medical Center with complaints of ulcerations between several of his toes on his right foot. His podiatrist recommends and plaintiff undergoes a surgical right third toe amputation.

Plaintiff is discharged from the hospital and returns home to recover from surgery. Defendant Medstar Health Visiting Nurse Association is assigned for the wound care of his amputated 3rd right toe while the plaintiff is at home.

A care plan is developed that includes repeated cleansing and dressing changes of the surgical wound site. This care plan is developed to prevent further ulcers. During the following month, three different nurses are assigned to care for the plaintiff. During this period, the necessary skin assessments and other infection interventions were not properly conducted by the nursing staff.

As a result, plaintiff develops an infection around the amputation site and additional ulcerations of his fourth and fifth toe. When the plaintiff is discharged from MedStar Visiting Nurse Association, the pressure ulcers had become non-healing and required surgical debridement of his right foot and the amputation of his fourth and fifth toes.

Additional Comments
  • The average verdict in a single toe amputation case is around $120,000. In this case, it is fair to say that the loss of the 4th and 5th toes is more significant because the patient already lost his third toe.
  • This case was filed by the alleged victim himself a few weeks shy of the statute of limitation in the case.
  • Hopefully, the plaintiff understands that he needs a medical expert to bring a viable claim. Setting aside the concerns about a pro se medical malpractice plaintiff being able to handle the administration of a medical malpractice lawsuit in Maryland, the key to the getting an expert who will fault the nurse's care.
  • Who would be the best possible expert? The doctor who amputated his 3rd toe. If he or she has the opinion that inadequate care was the reason the toes were amputated, that would make a very compelling case.
  • Baltimore County
  • MedStar Health Visiting Nurse Association, Inc. (d/b/a MedStar Vising Nurse Association)
  • Three registered nurses
Hospitals Where Patient was Treated
  • Franklin Square Medical Center

Key claims:

  • Failing to provide adequate diagnostic procedures and tests to determine the nature and severity of the plaintiff's risk of pressure ulcers
  • Failing to properly dress the surgical wounds to prevent ulceration at the amputation site
  • Failing to appropriate treatments and procedures
  • Failing to carefully and thoroughly evaluate the effects of the chosen treatments
Specific Counts Pled
  • Medical Negligence
Plaintiff's Experts and Areas of Specialty
  • None at this time
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