Neurosurgeon Faces Medical Malpractice Lawsuit After Operating on Wrong Side of Brain June 3, 2013.

Having suffered a series of mini strokes five years ago, a 53-year-old woman consented to a left-sided craniotomy to prevent future strokes, according to the Daily Mail. That April 4 surgery left her unable to care for herself or speak coherently when her 46-year-old neurosurgeon first operated on the wrong side of her brain and then, realizing his mistake, operated on the left side six days later.

Regina Turner’s medical malpractice lawsuit claims the St. Clare Health Care Center staff set up the operating room incorrectly and "stood by and watched [surgeon Armond Levy] operate on the wrong side of the plaintiff’s skull and brain when they could have prevented the error," Fox News reported.

Chris Howard, president and CEO of SSM Health Care, which owns St. Clare Health Center and a total of 18 hospitals in four states, has reportedly apologized to Ms. Turner and reached out to the family to resolve the matter.

"This was a breakdown in our procedures, and it absolutely should not have happened," he said.

He also said SSM is investigating the botched craniotomy which, according to Johns Hopkins Medicine, may be performed to:

  • Diagnose, remove, or treat tumors;
  • Repair damage from an aneurysm or skull fracture;
  • Extract blood clots from a leaking vessel;
  • Drain an abscess;
  • Relieve pressure as a result of traumatic brain injury or stroke;
  • Treat epilepsy.

St. Clare Health Center President Bill Hoefer stated that his hospital takes medical errors "very seriously … and [w]e investigate thoroughly to see what processes can be changed to prevent it from ever happening again, and then we make those changes immediately."

In the meantime, Turner requires round-the-clock care.

When asked whether she would ever recuperate, her medical malpractice lawyer stated, "There’s always hope and prayer."

If you believe a medical mistake caused severe brain damage and permanent disability, attorney Chris Mellino welcomes you to contact our Cleveland office for a free consultation before Ohio’s statute of limitations expires in your potential claim. You may also download or request Chris Mellino’s free guide to filing a medical malpractice claim in Ohio.

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