$1 Million Settlement for Negligent Cancer Screening by Osteopath and Surgeon

A 56-year-old husband and father of three was being monitored by his elderly osteopath for many years because he suffered from both hepatitis C and cirrhosis of the liver. That combination of those conditions makes the risk of getting liver cancer much greater. Despite that fact, the osteopath ignored an ultrasound report of a liver mass and only acted on its other recommendation for gall bladder surgery. The general surgeon made the same mistake. Those errors resulted in a delay of more than one year in the diagnosis of liver cancer, which by then was terminal and lead to the patient’s death within months. The surgeon claimed it was only his job to deal with the gallbladder. Both doctors tried to excuse their failures or minimize the damage from those failures by claiming that the ultrasound findings were inconclusive and liver cancer could have killed the patient anyway, even with earlier diagnosis. After three years of litigation and supporting opinions from both a surgeon with specialized liver cancer experience and a same specialty osteopath, and with a scheduled trial date, the defendants finally agreed to a fair settlement.