In a tragic case of medical malpractice recently decided by one state appellate court, a woman underwent a liposuction procedure at a medical spa and tragically died just a few days later from septic shock. The woman’s husband filed a medical malpractice claim against the company, alleging that the bacteria causing the shock came from the medical spa during his wife’s procedure. He claimed that certain equipment had not been properly disinfected and sterilized.
The case went to trial once, but it resulted in a mistrial based on the improper questioning of a witness in front of the jury. The case was retried, and the jury found in favor of the woman’s husband. The jury awarded him over $3 million in damages. The spa appealed the decision. It argued that there was not sufficient evidence for the jury to find in favor of the husband.
The court explained that it would not set aside the jury’s verdict as long as it was supported by substantial and competent evidence. It also would not second guess determinations of credibility and the weight of the evidence made by the jury. In this case, there was a medical expert who explained how the spa’s procedures for sterilizing and disinfecting the reusable medical equipment used in the procedure breached the standard of care for cosmetic surgeons. There also was evidence that the spa’s breach caused the woman’s death because septic shock occurs after an infection causes the body to go into shock, and she had bacteria present near where she was injected. Even though there was some evidence presented by the defense suggesting that the bacteria could have come from her post-procedure care, the jury’s decision was still reasonable and would not be second guessed. Accordingly, there was substantial evidence supporting the jury’s verdict, and the decision was affirmed.
Appellate Standards of Review
When an appeal is heard, the appellate court has to decide the case according to the applicable standard of review. The standard of review is the standard by which an appellate court reviews the decision of the lower court, jury, or agency. The standard varies by case, by issue, and by where the case is filed.
In Illinois, the Illinois Appellate Court reviews final judgments by the circuit courts and certain appeals of agency orders. The Illinois Supreme Court reviews appeals from the Appellate Court. The Appellate Court is divided into five districts with at least three judges. Normally, in order to review a decision, the decision must be a final judgment, although some appeals can be made even before a final judgment.
Deadlines for appeals have to be closely monitored, since parties have limited windows to file an appeal. In addition, the five districts follow their own rules in regard to filing an appeal, so it is important to know how to file the appeal correctly before the deadline passes.
Contact a Medical Malpractice Attorney
Even highly trained medical professionals can make mistakes. If you believe that you or a loved one has been a victim of medical malpractice, it is important to talk to a skilled attorney about your case. The Chicago attorneys at Moll Law Group may be able to help you seek damages. Billions of dollars have been recovered in cases in which we were involved. We represent individuals in Naperville, Schaumburg, Wheaton, and communities throughout Cook County. Call us at 312-462-1700 or use or online form to set up a free initial consultation.
See More Posts:
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Woman Fails to Provide Required Notice in Medical Malpractice Claim, Resulting in Dismissal, Illinois Injury Lawyer Blog, July 23, 2016.
Court Hold Adults Who Serve Alcohol to Minors May Be Liable for Related Injuries, Illinois Injury Lawyer Blog, August 9, 2016.