$800,000 Settlement for Pediatrician Who Failed to Diagnose Hydrocephalus

The firm settled this claim on behalf of the infant plaintiff against his pediatrician for failure to diagnose hydrocephalus. The infant plaintiff was born healthy and although he was seen many times by his pediatrician, that doctor only took head circumference measurements at 2½ and 4½ months of age. The standard of care recommended by the American Academy of Pediatricians requires head circumference measures at regular intervals –2, 4, 6, 9 and 12 months of age. Despite a history from the mother of projectile vomiting, regression of milestones, lethargy and no longer being able to hold his head up, the pediatrician failed to re-measure the head and claimed that he only saw the infant on sick-visits after 4.5 months, and that the mother failed to schedule a well visit where head measurements would have been done. By the time the mother, on her own initiative, sought out examination by a neurodevelopmental specialist, her child had massive hydrocephalus and suffered severe neurological impairments due to brain injury from that ongoing abnormal condition. Had a timely diagnosis of hydrocephalus been made, the infant could have undergone shunting surgery sooner, and avoided a large part of the permanent brain injury he suffered.