4.5 Million dollar verdict against a surgeon

November 1, 1992

A previously healthy 62 year old man was admitted to the hospital with complaints of severe stomach pain. An examination revealed that his abdomen was rigid and very tender and there were no bowel sounds, indicating that his intestines were not functioning properly. A surgeon was called who correctly determined that surgery was required, but failed to perform the surgery until eight hours later. By that time, all but 2 feet of the patient’s small intestine was dead. Because of the delay in treatment, the patient was required to be fed intravenously for the rest of his life, being hooked up to a pump every night for 12 hours. The Litchfield jury returned a verdict against the surgeon for $4,500,000, the largest verdict ever rendered in the conservative Litchfield Judicial District.