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$13M Boston Medical Malpractice Verdict Awarded to Widow of Man Who Died Following Throat Surgery

The Boston Herald reports that a decade after Cynthia Price-Brown’s husband died following a routine tonsil procedure, their family has been awarded a $13 million Boston medical malpractice verdict against the surgeon, Dr. Peter Ambrus. Eric Price was 38 when he underwent the surgery to correct a mild case of sleep apnea at South Shore Hospital in Weymouth.

Ambrus performed a palate production, a turbinate reduction, a tonsillectomy, and fixed Price’s deviated septum. According to to Price-Brown, two days after the procedures, he started to bleed profusely and died within minutes. She filed her Boston wrongful death case in 2007.

Price-Brown’s Boston tonsil malpractice lawyer says that considering that Price only had a mild case of sleep apnea, it was poor advice to recommend that he undergo the surgical procedure. An attorney for Ambrus, however, said that heavy bleeding is known to be a tonsillectomy-related complication, and, although rare, death is also a risk. The verdict only requires a $1 million payout that Ambrus’s insurance will cover.

Tonsillectomy Medical Malpractice
Because adults have bigger arteries and vessesls than children, tonsillectomy procedures are risker for adults. However, both children and adults are at risk of complications and injuries, such as excessive bleeding, surgical burns, airway fire injuries, and tissue injuries.

Earlier this year, the parents of 17-year-old Mariah Edwards recovered $6 million for her wrongful death after her tonsil surgery. Poor-post operative care was blamed as a cause. Edwards sustained permanent damage to her brain after it was deprived of oxygen for an extended period.

And in another tonsillectomy malpractice case, this time involving a 9-year-old who also suffered from sleep apnea, the lawsuit was settled for $1 million. The tonsil procedure was recommended to improve his sleep apnea. However, the anesthesiologist did not know about the child’s pre-existing history and the boy was given a narcotic pain med after the surgery. Within hours, he became unresponsive and the sleep apnea caused an airway obstruction that prevented oxygen from reaching his brain.

Massachusetts Medical Malpractice
Doctors, surgeons, nurses, anesthesiologists, obstetricians, gynecologists, dentists, and other medical professionals owe patients a certain level of care. When the failure to provide that care leads to complications, injuries, or death, the patient or his/her loved ones may be able to file a Boston medical malpractice case.

According to a study published in 2012, postoperative bleeding was the most common tonsillectomy complication. Number two on the list was anoxic events, followed by postoperative medication issues. If you think you may have grounds for a Boston medical negligence case, you should speak with an experienced Massachusetts personal injury lawyer right away. You also may have reason to file a case against other liable parties. A Massachusetts medical medical practice case is not the type of injury claim you want to pursue on your own.

Widow awarded $13M in husband’s post-op death, Boston Herald, September 5, 2014
Complications and legal outcomes of tonsillectomy malpractice claims, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health

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