Getting The Right Experts Leads To Favorable Settlement In Exam Room Fall

May 3, 2017

Plaintiff, Deloris Davis, sued Foot & Ankle Health Care Center after she fell in an examination room during her treatment for chronic foot pain. The fall was allegedly due to the dangerous condition created when the podiatrist directed her to wear paper slippers and walk across the examination room’s hardwood flooring. Plain­tiff’s damages included a complete tear of her rotator cuff requiring over 6 months of physical therapy and open rotator cuff surgery to repair. Despite a successful surgery, Plaintiff had daily pain and permanent loss of movement in her arm and shoulder.

Patton & Ryan retained experts in premises liability, human fac­tors, and orthopedic surgery to attack Plaintiff’s theory of liability and causation head on. Slip resistance testing was conducted showing that the hardwood flooring in the examination room met all recognized standards for slip resistance. A human factors analysis showed that the fall was not related to the medical grade paper slippers, but was rather due to Plaintiff’s failure to follow the medical staff’s directions. Our expert in orthopedic surgery identified that diagnostic imaging from after the accident showed degenerative changes to Plaintiff’s shoulder consistent with a pre-existing condition.

Patton & Ryan’s aggressive “leave no stone unturned” defense resulted in a favorable settlement of less than ½ the Plaintiff’s past medical expenses and far below the cost of defense in the week before trial.