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$1.7 million failure to diagnose colon cancer

Our clients were the wife and two teenage children of the deceased, who died at age 60 from colon cancer. Colon cancer has a hereditary component. Our client’s husband came from a family where literally every member for the past two generations on his mother’s side was diagnosed with colorectal cancer or had multiple colonic adenomas (pre-cancerous growths that can evolve into cancer if not removed).

In 1993, when he was in his 50s, the husband went to the gastroenterologist with the express goal of preventing colon cancer, which he told the doctor was prevalent in his family. The gastroenterologist never took an adequate history and never understood the true extent of the colon cancer family history. As a result, the doctor failed to consider and treat him as a high-risk patient.

The doctor performed three endoscopic examinations a couple of years apart but recommended no other care or treatments. Almost exactly a year after the last endoscopic exam, the husband was diagnosed with a 4cm, obstructing colon tumor. The cancer was terminal, it had spread throughout his abdominal cavity.

One of our attorneys, Kerry Kidman, dissected hundreds of articles written by the defense’s expert witness Dr. Rex and discovered logical disconnects between the findings and conclusions. During his cross-examination, Kerry successfully proved that Dr. Rex’s conclusions were wrong.