Medical Malpractice News: Professional Athletes

Medical Malpractice Can Impact Careers & Earning Potential

It can be difficult to fully appreciate the consequences of a single medical mistake unless it has happened to you or someone you love. However, these mistakes happen every day and can happen to anyone, anywhere. We put a lot of faith in medical care providers and expect them to fulfill their duty of care. When they don’t, patients suffer, and lives can be lost.

The consequences of medical negligence and malpractice are significant, and they extend beyond the patient’s immediate injuries. In fact, medical mistakes can cost a patient their career, passion, and livelihood. Furthermore, when this happens, the injured patient may struggle to support themselves and their families. This is truly devastating.

To help gain some insight into how instances of medical negligence or malpractice can have a lifelong impact on a patient’s career, earning potential, and financial stability, we review some recent medical malpractice cases involving professional athletes below.

The Challenges of Proving Medical Malpractice

Before we get started, we’d like to discuss the challenges of legally proving medical malpractice. Medical malpractice is typically identified as a situation in which a physician or other healthcare worker with a duty of care to a patient breaches that duty, resulting in injury or harm to the patient. In extreme cases, medical malpractice can devastatingly result in unnecessary patient death.

While this seems very straightforward, proving medical malpractice is easier said than done. Even in cases where it appears clear that negligence or error resulted in a patient’s injury or death, the legal burden of proof can still be difficult to achieve.

Proving medical malpractice can also be a challenge when it comes to identifying liability. Not only can a healthcare provider administering direct care be responsible for a patient’s injuries, but in some cases, the hospital or facility they work for, administrators, or other healthcare providers also treating the patient may also be liable for medical malpractice.

As you can see in the two cases outlined below, both physicians and the hospitals, surgical centers, and other healthcare facilities in which they may practice can be implicated in a medical malpractice lawsuit. Additionally, as these cases progress, the defendants named in a case may change, such as in Tyrod Taylor’s case mentioned below.

Awarded: Michael Cox Wins Over $28 Million

Michael Cox, a former New York Giants running back, was recently awarded $28.5 million in his medical malpractice suit against New York Presbyterian Hospital’s Hospital for Special Surgery and the late Dr. Dean Lorich. In 2014, Lorich performed surgery on Cox after Cox suffered significant injuries in a game, including breaking his leg, injuring his ankle, and suffering cartilage damage. According to Cox, the surgery was a failure, and Cox’s career with the NFL ended as a result.

A jury awarded Cox:

  • $12 million in lost earnings
  • $1 million in past pain and suffering
  • $15.5 million for future pain and suffering

The outcome of the case affirmed Cox’s assertion that he received inadequate medical care from his physician and the hospital at which he was treated. The result of this was that Cox suffered significant damages and injury.

Ongoing: Tyrod Taylor Seeks $5 Million After Punctured Lung

Former Los Angeles Chargers quarterback, Tyrod Taylor, is suing the Chargers’ team doctor, David S. Gazzaniga, after suffering a punctured lung in 2020. The lawsuit was filed in May 2021, and the trial is scheduled for June 2023. According to the suit, Taylor suffered a punctured lung after Gazzaniga administered a pain-killing injection to treat pain from Taylor’s fractured ribs. Initially, Taylor had also named the Newport Orthopedic Institute (where Dr. Gazzaniga works) as a defendant in the case, but they have since been dismissed from the case.

Taylor alleges that negligence on the part of Gazzaniga caused him to be hospitalized, necessitated physical therapy, and caused him to suffer significant pain, and ultimately cost him his position as the 2020 starting quarterback for the Chargers. As such, he is seeking $5 million in damages, alleging that this is the minimum salary difference he suffered by losing his starting quarterback position. Taylor has also accused Gazzaniga of medical battery, alleging that Taylor did not receive accurate informed consent before Gazzaniga treated him.

When to Call an Attorney

Suppose you suspect that you or a loved one has been the victim of medical malpractice. In that case, you should reach out to an experienced medical malpractice attorney, like ours at Golomb Legal. Our Philadelphia-based law firm has helped countless clients and their families deal with medical malpractice claims. We have recovered over $2 billion in verdicts and settlements and can handle any medical malpractice case, no matter how complex.

We understand what you’re going through, and we are tireless advocates for our clients. Send us a message online to schedule a free consultation.