Michael J. Sacopulos, Esq.
As the general counsel for Medical Justice, I see a number of bizarre and unfair medical malpractice claims. However, recently I have read several claims that were so odd as to attract my attention. The first involves a surgical patient at Baylor Health Hospital in Dallas. A Nebraska man had traveled to Baylor for a routine tonsil and sinus surgery. Following his surgery the patient, Michael Woolman, noticed that his armpit was “bloody.” He later filed suit in Federal Court against Baylor Health Hospital alleging, in part, that a GPS tracking system had been installed in his armpit. He goes on to complain that this surgery violated his civil rights and has caused him mental anguish. He has filed this complaint on his own and is not represented by counsel. Beyond this, I will not comment further….
In late July 2011, another interesting medical malpractice claim was filed. This involves a man who was allegedly poisoned to death by his wife. The man was admitted to the University Medical Center of Princeton in January of this year for abdominal pain and numbness in his hands and feet. During his hospital stay, which ended in his death, the man’s wife visited him daily. It is alleged that his wife had access to Thallium from her employer Bristol Myers Squibb. It is further alleged that she poisoned her husband to death with the Thallium while the man was in the hospital. In fact, the woman was criminally charged with murder in February of 2011 and is currently awaiting trial. The family brought action against the Medical Center for not protecting the man from being poisoned by his wife. The family also brought an action against Bristol Myers Squibb.
It seems as though there is a never ending variety of patterns from which medical providers are sued. Whether it is an alleged misdiagnosis or an alleged GPS tracking system surgically implanted into an armpit, the claims just keep coming. For a better idea of the volume of medical malpractice claims filed, I refer you to the August 28, 2011 New England Journal of Medicine issue on this topic. It is a rough world out there…