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A woman who developed urinary incontinence after undergoing gynecological surgery performed by a doctor who misstated his credentials agreed to a $2 million settlement in her Morris County suit, McMillan v. Littman, on Oct. 30.
Kaitlyn McMillan underwent surgery for a prolapse of the urethra at Specialty Surgery Center in Sparta. Her surgeon, Paul Littman, used a resectoscope to remove most of the urethra after discovering that it had a stricture, said her attorney, Paul da Costa of Snyder Sarno D'Aniello Maceri & da Costa in Roseland.
After the procedure, McMillan suffered urinary incontinence and urinary tract infections, the suit claimed. She underwent multiple procedures to reconstruct her urethra but without success, and now she uses a self-catheter to urinate through a stoma in her abdomen, according to da Costa.
Littman claimed he had completed a fellowship in urogynecology but he left that four-year program after three years, da Costa said. McMillan filed suit against Littman, claiming he deviated from acceptable standards of care by performing an excision of a urethral stricture.
The plaintiff experts opined that the stricture removed by Littman was asymptomatic, and no treatment was warranted, da Costa said. The plaintiff also argued that Littman failed to disclose the risk and potential complications of the procedure. Littman said at a deposition that his initial plan did not call for resection of the urethra or use of a resectoscope, and he had never used a resectoscope without supervision, da Costa said.
McMillan, now 23, also sued Specialty Surgical Center, the facility where the operation took place, and two of its adminstrators: physician Donald Mykulak and registered nurse Bonnie Brady. McMillan claimed Mykulak and Brady were negligent in granting credentials and privileges to Littman and failing to discover that he falsified his urogynecology fellowship credential, daCosta said.
The parties agreed to the $2 million settlement after the close of discovery and prior to trial. Littman will pay $1 million toward the settlement, and the surgery center, Mykulak and Brady will jointly pay the other $1 million, da Costa said. The agreement also calls for a "cease and desist" clause in which Littman agrees not to represent himself as having completed fellowship training in urogynecology, daCosta said.
Littman was represented by Craig Combs of Giblin, Combs, Schwartz, Cunningham & Scarpa in Morristown, who has since died. Another attorney at the firm who was involved in the settlement, Christina Scarpa, did not return a call.
Mykulak and the surgery center were represented by Kenneth Brown of Weber Gallagher Simpson Stapleton Fires & Newby in Bedminster, and Brady's lawyer was Matthew Corso of Buchanan Ingersoll & Rooney in Princeton. They did not return calls about the case.
— Charles Toutant
$1.5M in Monmouth County Auto Case
Moore v. T Transporter: A Cliffwood woman will receive $1.5 million for injuries she sustained when her car was struck by a commercial truck.
Plaintiff Susan Moore, now 55, agreed to the settlement with Protective Insurance Co., the carrier for defendants T Transporter Inc. and its driver, Kyle Annese, on Nov. 7, according to Moore's attorney, Norman Hobbie.
Moore was injured on Feb. 11, 2015, as she was driving westbound on West County Line Road in Lakewood, said Hobbie, of Hobbie, Corrigan & DeCarlo in Eatontown.
Moore's car was in the right lane when the T Transporter box truck made an abrupt right turn and struck her car, Hobbie said.
As a result of the accident, Moore sustained orthopedic injuries to her neck and lower back, and disc herniation that required fusion surgery, Hobbie said. She also suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder, Hobbie said.
Protective retained Ryan Lang of the Roseland office of Callahan & Fusco. He confirmed the amount of the settlement.
The lawsuit was filed in Monmouth County. No trial date had been set. The matter settled after mediation with C. Judson Hamlin of the Keefe Law Firm in Red Bank, a retired Superior Court judge.
— Michael Booth
$650K for Truck vs. Car
Noa v. Lavon-Coleman: A driver who suffered neck and back injuries in a collision with a truck agreed to a $650,000 settlement in his suit in federal court in Newark on Oct. 29.
Jose Noa, 39, was driving north on York Street in Elizabeth on May 9, 2014, when he came upon a tractor-trailer that was pulled to the right side of the road. As Noa passed the truck, it suddenly turned left, striking the right side of Noa's vehicle, he claimed.
The driver of the truck, Jamil Lavon-Coleman, maintained that he was waiting to make a left turn when Noa went around him on his left, according to plaintiff lawyer Steven Haddad.
As a result of the accident, Noa underwent fusion with implantation of a plate and screws at L4-L5 and at L5-S1. He was out of work for roughly a year but has recovered, according to Haddad, of the Haddad Law Firm in Woodbridge.
Noa, of Elizabeth, sued Lavon-Coleman, a Baltimore resident, and his employer, Western Express Inc. of Nashville, Tennessee, in Union County Superior Court. Lawyers for the defendants removed the case to federal court.
Following private mediation with Mark Epstein of Hoagland, Longo, Moran, Dunst & Doukas in New Brunswick, a former Superior Court judge, the parties agreed to a $650,000 settlement, to be paid by Western Express, which was self-insured, Haddad said.
Besides Haddad, the plaintiff was represented by Nehal Modi, also of the Haddad firm.
Matthew Bauer of Connell Foley represents the defendants. He did not return a call about the case.
— Charles Toutant