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Romanucci & Blandin obtains $40 million verdict against Advocate Christ Medical Center for child paralyzed after surgery

December 26, 2023

Romanucci & Blandin, LLC announces that after a three-week trial in a medical malpractice action, a jury awarded a child $40 million in damages for paralysis resulting from a spinal cord stroke that occurred during heart surgery. At the time of his surgery, the child was three months old, and he is now paralyzed for life. The trial team established that the pediatric heart surgeon and perfusion team did not adequately protect the baby’s spinal cord after a lower extremity blood pressure line was reported as not working properly. The case was tried in Chicago’s Daley Center under Judge Daniel A. Trevino and the verdict was reached late in the day on December 22, 2023.

The Romanucci & Blandin trial team was led by Founding Partner Stephan D. Blandin, Partner Michael E. Holden, Senior Attorney Daisy Ayllón, Senior Attorney Sarah M. Raisch and others, and received significant support from Matthew Dominguez, Lindsey Blandin and Lucy Gonzalez, all of whom were committed to seeing that their client receive justice.

The plaintiffs are parents of their now 10-year-old son. The complaint, filed in April 2021 in the Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois Law Division, detailed a surgery at Advocate Christ Medical Center in Oak Lawn on August 1, 2013, when the boy was three months old. The procedure was intended to repair a congenital heart defect. During the nearly 3-hour operation that day, the infant was put on a cardio-pulmonary bypass machine, but the medical team failed to maintain or monitor proper blood flow to the infant’s lower extremities which resulted in catastrophic injury to his lower body. The boy suffered permanent and life-altering injuries and is now paralyzed in his lower trunk and legs.

“The perfusion and surgical team repeatedly took unnecessary chances and ignored repeated red flags. The paralysis was completely and easily preventable. During the trial, the hospital worked very hard to protect their reputation and their own from accountability. Had they applied a fraction of this effort paying attention to their own red flags, this little boy would not be paralyzed for life,” said Founding Partner Stephan D. Blandin, Romanucci & Blandin.

To learn more about legal options involving medical malpractice, visit our practice area page.

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