Young man awards undisclosed settlement after surgery left him with “drop foot”
Some unfortunate people experience a poor outcome from surgery and they wonder if it was the result of malpractice. Malpractice is the breach of the standard of care expected of either a doctor or a nurse during the surgery or during treatment after the surgery. In one such case we acted for a young man who made his living on construction sites. He was driving home when a motorist turned left in front of him, causing fractures in his right foot and right leg. What complicated this case was that after the surgery our client had serious neurological compromise of his left foot, even though the injury was to the right foot and leg. Because of challenges that arose during the surgery to repair the right foot and leg our client suffered peroneal nerve palsy secondary to compression. The impairment to the left foot, namely “drop foot” and constant pain, was the most disabling impairment our client suffered. We were successful in obtaining opinions from competent orthopaedic surgeons that this further injury was the result of a breach of the standard of care by the physician who was in charge of the surgery. As a result the Canadian Medical Protective Association (CMPA) contributed to a substantial settlement for our client.