Double Amputee Fights Back In Long Island Malpractice Lawsuit
In a medical malpractice trial seemingly straight out of Hollywood, 33-year-old Stacey Galette testified in a New York Supreme Court that negligence on the part of Winthrop University Hospital turned a routine procedure into a horrific nightmare – ultimately leaving her a double amputee.
The Long Island resident sought medical attention in 2009 for the removal of an ectopic pregnancy – an otherwise simple procedure that was performed laparoscopically. Unfortunately, the operation did not go smoothly, as doctors reportedly punctured her colon, an error that would have life-long repercussions for the victim.
During testimony, Galette says that she was discharged from the Long Island hospital despite searing pain, which prompted her return to Winthrop the next day. Following an emergency surgery, Galette woke up to find that surgeons were forced to amputate both her legs below the knee, due to gangrene and blood poisoning.
Long Island medical malpractice lawsuit details
Galette told jurors, “Next thing I remember was in November, when I woke up in the ICU…I was having pain in my legs. I thought it’s from pressure cuffs that were on my legs,” she testified, referring to compression sleeves often used after surgery. “I told my dad to release the pressure cuffs off my legs, and my dad told me it’s not pressure cuffs — that my legs had to be amputated.”
Her attorneys claim that Winthrop University Hospital doctors who treated Galette were negligent in addressing the gangrene, which spreads rapidly, destroying tissue in its wake. Legal counsel for the Long Island hospital countered that Galette’s doctors actually saved her life, and that despite her disability, she can still work and lead a productive life.
Medical professionals testified that a colon puncture was a rare mistake and avoidable occurrence — and that the hospital didn’t react swiftly to the life-threatening complication.
During the hearing, Gallete told the panel, “I cried every day in the hospital from depression,” adding that she could no longer take care of her the daughter the way she used to. Galette was discharged from the hospital in 2010 and is still in the process of learning to walk with her prosthetic legs.
Galette says she still struggles with balance problems when she’s walking, and falls occasionally with her new prosthetic limbs. Hers will be a long road to recovery.
Legal advocacy for victims of surgical negligence
It remains to be seen if jurors will render a positive verdict for Galette in the Long Island medical malpractice lawsuit, but some would argue that monetary compensation will never erase the pain and suffering endured by the victim, who is now a double amputee. However, a jury award can ease the financial hardships caused by medical expenses and lost wages that Galette continues to suffer.
If you or a loved one was injured due to surgical negligence in Long Island, contact The Sanders Firm for a free and confidential case review. Our dedicated malpractice lawyers are committed to balancing the scales of justice for innocent victims of surgical mistakes. Call 1-800-FAIR- PLAY to set up your consultation today – and remember, there are no upfront costs as we don’t collect a fee unless you do. Resources
- Daily News, Hospital victim says procedure led to legs being amputated: \’It was a sharp, driving pain. And it kept getting worse, http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/brooklyn/eclusive-hospital-victim-procedure-worse-article-1.1537002
- Gothamist, Nightmare Surgery Mishap Leaves Woman A Double Amputee, http://gothamist.com/2013/11/05/nightmare_surgery_misshap_leaves_wo.php