Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Turner v. Rabalais

Court of Appeals of Louisiana, First Circuit

December 21, 2017

FLORA AND RICHARD TURNER
v.
DR. ROBERT RABALAIS AND ABC INSURANCE COMPANY

         Appealed from the 19th Judicial District Court In and for the Parish of East Baton Rouge State of Louisiana Case No. 622-688 The Honorable Donald R. Johnson, Judge Presiding

          John D. Sileo Casey W. Moll New Orleans, Louisiana Counsel for Plaintiffs/ Appellants Flora and Richard Turner.

          Lorraine P. Mcinnis E. John Litchfield New Orleans, Louisiana Counsel for Defendant/ Appellee East Baton Rouge Medical Center, LLC d/b/a Ochsner Medical Center.

          BEFORE: McCLENDON, WELCH, AND THERIOT, JJ.

          THERIOT, J.

         Flora and Richard Turner (collectively known as "Appellants") appeal the judgment of the Nineteenth Judicial District Court granting the motions for summary judgment filed by Robert David Rabalais, M.D. ("Dr. Rabalais") and East Baton Rouge Medical Center, L.L.C. d/b/a Ochsner Medical Center ("Ochsner"), and denying Appellants' motion for summary judgment. For the following reasons, we affirm.

         FACTS AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY

         On June 28, 2013, Appellants filed a medical malpractice suit against Dr. Rabalais and ABC Insurance Company.[1] Dr. Rabalais is a practicing physician in Baton Rouge, Louisiana; ABC Insurance Company is his insurer. In their petition, Appellants alleged that on July 24, 2012, Mr. Turner sought treatment from Dr. Rabalais because of pain in his left knee.[2]According to Appellants, x-rays were ordered prior to Mr. Turner's visit with Dr. Rabalais. Appellants alleged that proper care was not used to transfer Mr. Turner from his mobile scooter to a walker when Mr. Turner was being x-rayed. Appellants further alleged that the walker given to Mr. Turner was too short, and that the combination of these actions resulted in Mr. Turner falling. According to Appellants, Dr. Rabalais reviewed the x-rays, which were taken after Mr. Turner's fall, found that there was nothing broken and/or that Mr. Turner was not severely injured, and released Mr. Turner.

         Following his release, Mr. Turner returned home and stayed in his reclining chair for five days, but was in pain the entire time. Mr. Turner was brought to the emergency room at Ochsner, where additional x-rays confirmed that he had two broken bones in his leg. As a result of the broken bones, Mr. Turner was admitted to the hospital for a few days and then released. At some point prior to release, Mr. Turner's right leg was placed in either a cast or a splint. Appellants alleged that his right leg was placed in a hard cast, while Ochsner contended that Mr. Turner's right leg was actually placed in a removable long leg splint.

         Appellants alleged that, after several days, Mr. Turner was brought to the Bone & Joint Clinic in Baton Rouge and that Mr. Turner vomited twice during the ride. Appellants further alleged that when Mr. Turner's cast (or splint) was removed, it was discovered that Mr. Turner had three sores on his right foot and left leg, his skin had turned black, and he experienced blood clots behind his knee.

         Following this discovery, Appellants alleged that Mr. Turner was next seen by Dr. Lawrence Messina, who placed Mr. Turner in a soft cast and confirmed that his bones were broken. According to Appellants, Mr. Turner was subsequently seen by Dr. Cravens, a vascular surgeon, who opined that Mr. Turner was in danger of "losing his left foot, left leg, and possibly his life." A filter was placed to deal with the clot in Mr. Turner's leg and surgery was later performed to harvest his veins in an attempt to re-vascularize his foot.

         After his surgery, Mr. Turner underwent hyperbaric treatment at the Advanced Wound Clinic at Baton Rouge General Hospital. Mr. Turner also sought treatment at Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center Wound Care Center. Appellants alleged that Mr. Turner now suffers from osteomyelitis and peripheral neuropathy. Appellants further alleged that Mr. Turner subsequently had his right leg amputated above the knee.

         As a result, Appellants submit that Dr. Rabalais breached his standard of care by failing to properly diagnose and treat Mr. Turner. According to Appellants, this alleged breach led to Mr. Turner suffering severe and debilitating damages, needing medical care and additional surgeries, and being permanently disabled and disfigured. Further, Appellants alleged that Mrs. Turner had suffered loss of consortium damages as a result of Mr. Turner's injuries.

         Mr. Turner's case proceeded to a medical review panel. On September 2, 2015, the panel unanimously found that the evidence in this case did not support the conclusion that the defendants failed to meet the applicable standard of care as charged in the complaint. The panel specifically stated:

The patient was appropriately x-rayed, observed, treated, and the appropriate immobilizer was provided. He was appropriately discharged with proper followup instructions. He presented to the [emergency room] the next day following this discharge. He was admitted to the hospital and an orthopedic consult was provided. He was discharged and referred to see ...

Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.