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Man wins $500,000 in medical malpractice case

Arizona residents may find disturbing the story regarding a Virginia man who was mocked by a doctor while undergoing a colonoscopy. The man was unconscious during the procedure, but his cellphone was recording throughout and caught the disparaging comments made about his body. Among other comments, the anesthesiologist told other doctors not to touch a genital rash because they may get syphilis on their arms by doing so.

The 42-year-old woman also called the man a wimp and made rude comments about where the man had gone to college. Although the man did not have hemorrhoids, the woman mentioned that it should be put on his chart that he did. The false note was later added to his chart. A jury awarded the man $50,000 for the syphilis comment as part of an award that totaled $500,000. Of that amount, $200,000 was for punitive damages while another $200,000 was for medical malpractice.

Although a lawyer for the anesthesiologist claims that the recording was illegal, the recording took place in a one-way consent state. In other words, only one party has to consent the recording to make it legal to do so. The anesthesiologist did not comment on the case and is no longer working at the hospital where the incident took place.

Patients who suffer from physical or emotional issues due to doctor errors may wish to take legal action against them. It may be possible to win compensation for the damages that have been incurred. Those who have been the victims of medical malpractice may wish to contact an attorney who may be able to determine the victim's legal options.

Source: USA Today, "Anesthesiologist mocked sedated patient, pays big", Kate Seamons, June 25, 2015

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