Lawsuit Alleges Negligence by Nicklaus Children’s Hospital Caused Paralysis in 12-Year-Old Child

PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. (July 30, 2021) – On July 22, 2021, Domnick Cunningham & Whalen (DCW) filed a lawsuit (CASE NO.: 502021CA009038XXXXMB) in the 15th Judicial Circuit Court seeking damages against Nicklaus Children’s Hospital. The complaint alleges delayed responses to post-surgical neurological red flags resulted in permanent paralysis and incontinence for a 12-year-old girl (minor child A.D.).

On December 6, 2018, A.D., an adolescent scoliotic patient, underwent spinal surgery with Dr. George at Nicklaus Children’s Hospital. Dr. George had been monitoring A.D.’s scoliosis for some time and recommended surgery to correct her spine. After any back surgery, the standard of care requires patients receive vigilant neurological monitoring for signs of a hematoma (a collection of blood compressing the spinal cord). If a hematoma is detected or suspected, it is deemed a medical emergency where immediate responses are required to avoid paralysis.

According to the medical records from Nicklaus Children’s Hospital, nurses observed a loss of movement in A.D.’s legs and a lack of response to pedal pulses approximately an hour and a half after her initial surgery. The records further indicate that despite the change in her condition, it was an hour before a call went to the doctor, another hour and a half before a doctor came to see the patient, and another hour before any action was taken. The complaint alleges that as a result of these delays A.D. now suffers from limited use of her legs and loss of function of her bowel and bladder.

Sean Domnick, a Shareholder at Domnick Cunningham & Whalen, explained, “The records reveal that critical time passed from the moment nurses noted a loss of movement in A.D.’s chart to the moment she was finally wheeled back into surgery. The chart clearly demonstrates an utter lack of urgency to what is undoubtedly a medical emergency. That delay is the difference between a child who played volleyball the day before surgery and one who may never play again.”

DCW attorneys Sean Domnick and Michelle DeLong are seeking a jury trial in this medical malpractice action. The complaint alleges unnecessary delays caused significant and permanent injuries that would not have occurred had the patient received timely treatment.

Domnick Cunningham & Whalen is a national civil litigation firm based in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla. The firm specializes in complex litigation including catastrophic personal injury, medical malpractice, nursing home abuse, trucking, and bad faith litigation. For more information, visit www.dcwlaw.com or call 561-625-6260.