Cook County Jury Returns $3.4 Million Verdict in Med-Mal Case

March 3, 2009

A Cook County Jury returned a $3.4 Million verdict on Friday afternoon for a medical negligence case involving the use of the wrong drug. McNabola Law Group attorneys Edward (Ted) McNabola and Theodore Jennings represented Mrs. Martha Minnifield in her case against Dr. Doris Lurwick.

In March 2002, Martha Minnifield's blood work revealed that she suffered from kidney disease. In April 2002, Dr. Doris Lurwick instructed Mrs. Minnifield to ingest a laxative called Fleets Phospha-Soda before her colonoscopy. This drug is widely known to pose a risk of kidney damage in patients with kidney disease. More importantly, there is a safe alternative drug called GoLytley that poses no risk to the kidneys. Mrs. Minnifield suffered kidney failure in the wake of her colonoscopy: required dialysis for 2.5 years and incurred $574,000 in medical bills.

The plaintiff demanded the policy limits of $2 million and offered a high/low agreement. The defense made no settlement offer and rejected the high low. The jury deliberated less than two hours.

"We are pleased that the jury so quickly recognized that Martha should have been given the safe alternative. Because, after all, why expose a patient to a risk unnecessarily?" Attorney Ted McNabola said. "This verdict will allow Martha to put this life-changing incident behind her." The case was tried in front of Judge Irwin J. Solganick. The defense was represented by Michael Slovis from Cunningham Meyer & Vedrine.