Terry Evans and Corey Herron prevailed in a six-day jury trial in which they represented Dr. Ralph Boling in Kirksville, Adair County, Missouri. The case was tried in the Fall of 2005.
Plaintiff, age 66 and post-menopausal, sought medical care and treatment in May 1996 for abnormal uterine bleeding at an outreach clinic in Edina, Missouri. An appointment for Plaintiff was made for the next day at Dr. Boling’s office. At that time, an endometrial biopsy was obtained, which was normal. However, the abnormal uterine bleeding continued. Plaintiff was again sent to Dr. Boling’s office for further evaluation in September 1996. In August 1997, Plaintiff stated she “can’t deal with the bleeding any more” and wanted to consider a hysterectomy. At that time, another endometrial biopsy was obtained and this time the pathological report was complex hyperplasia without atypia.
Dr. Boling saw Plaintiff for the first time in December 1997, and discussed with Plaintiff her options to include a D&C or a hysterectomy. Plaintiff opted for the hysterectomy.
A laparoscopic-assisted vaginal hysterectomy (LAVH) was performed by Dr. Boling on February 4, 1998. During the LAVH procedure, Plaintiff’s bladder was torn and both ureters were avulsed. The injury was repaired intra-operatively.
Plaintiff’s complaints were of pain in her abdomen, flank, low back and legs. In January 2005, the right kidney was surgically removed.
Plaintiff contended that the LAVH was an unnecessary surgery and that the surgery was done improperly.
Dr. Boling contended that the LAVH was appropriate treatment under the circumstances and that his technique in performing the surgery met the standard of care. Further, such an injury is a known complication of a LAVH and the injury was timely discovered intra-operatively and repaired.
Prior to trial, Plaintiff’s demand was $1,000,000. The plaintiff asked the jury to return a verdict in the amount of $500,000. The jury returned a verdict in favor of Dr. Boling, and awarded nothing to Plaintiff.