R.S., a 55 year old medical equipment installer, contacted the workers compensation attorneys of Lipkin & Apter after tearing the meniscus in his left knee while moving a hospital bed into a customer’s home. He began treatment with an orthopedic surgeon, who, after viewing an MRI, scheduled R.S. for surgery.

Nurses at the surgicenter prepared the incorrect, right knee for surgery, which the surgeon operated on. The right knee operation took place despite the nurses and surgeon having verbally confirmed with R.S. that he presented for left knee surgery, despite the left knee being shaved (not the right knee), and despite the surgeon initialing the left knee as the surgical site. 15 minutes into the surgery, the team realized its mistake, removed equipment from the right knee, and proceeded to perform the intended surgery on the left knee. The results proved devastating.

Placing surgical instruments into healthy tissue and performing a partial meniscectomy on a knee not requiring it made R.S.’s right knee symptomatic. Eventually, he underwent a total knee replacement. At the same time, the left knee originally injured in the work accident was also damaged, and required a total knee replacement.

The attorneys at Lipkin & Apter developed two separate legal actions: workers compensation and medical malpractice (against both the surgeon and surgicenter).

A torn meniscus is a common work-related injury which might have expected value at 20% loss of a leg, depending on the extent of recovery, and the worker's ability to return to his former job. At R.S.’s average weekly wage, this would have resulted in a case worth approximately $30,000. Instead, R.S. received nearly $700,000 of workers compensation and medical malpractice compensation.

The personal injury attorneys of Chicago’s Lipkin & Apter utilized their legal experience and knowledge of Illinois Workers Compensation Law to earn their client a $700,000 settlement. If you would like to speak with our lawyers about a work-related injury that you or a loved one may have been involved in, contact us for a free in-office or telephone consultation.