$10 Million Verdict For Man Misdiagnosed With ALS


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Founding partner Matt Casey won a $10 million verdict in a medical malpractice case involving a 60-year-old man who was misdiagnosed with ALS by a noted expert on the fatal neuromuscular disease.

During the two-week trial in Philadelphia, Casey successfully argued that Leo McCluskey, M.D., was negligent in diagnosing Eric Davenport in 2003 with ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease. McCluskey, the medical director of the ALS Association Center at the Hospital at the University of Pennsylvania, did not perform tests and consult with radiologists before diagnosing Davenport with ALS. After arriving at the misdiagnosis, McCluskey told Davenport he had 18 months to three years to live.

Davenport didn’t receive the correct diagnosis - that he suffered from a spinal cord compression - until more than three years later, after he had already made plans for his own funeral.

Casey successfully argued that if Davenport was diagnosed properly in 2003 by McCluskey, his condition would have been treatable with surgery. But because years passed, surgery no longer was an option and Davenport, who lives in New Jersey, now suffers with permanent leg paralysis.

The jury in the case returned a $10 million verdict.

In September 2013, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court denied the final appeal by the Trustees of the University of Pennsylvania and McCluskey. As a result, Davenport will recover the full amount of the jury’s verdict, plus interest, which totals in excess of $11.7 million.

Disclaimer: Ross Feller Casey, LLP provides legal advice only after an attorney-client relationship is formed. Our website is an introduction to the firm and does not create a relationship between our attorneys and clients. An attorney-client relationship is formed only after a written agreement is signed by the client and the firm. Because every case is unique, the description of awards and summary of cases successfully handled are not intended to imply or guarantee that same success in other cases. Ross Feller Casey, LLP represents catastrophically injured persons and their families in injury and wrongful death cases, providing legal representation in Pennsylvania and New Jersey.