The facts are these. On November 17, 2006, Dr. Cyril Raben performed a cervical diskectomy and fusion surgery on Mrs. Paulino’s spine. A follow-up scan showed failure of the fusion in the C6–7 region and that two screws used to hold medical hardware in place were backing out or shifting out of place. After looking at these scans, Dr. Raben recommended that Mrs. Paulino schedule a second surgery to remove the medical hardware and replace it with newer hardware. According to the Paulinos, the purpose of the second surgery was to replace the medical hardware, remove bone spurs, and attempt to fuse the region where the earlier fusion had failed.
The second surgery occurred on December 17, 2007. After the surgery, Mrs. Paulino complained of extreme pain in her neck and shoulders and told the nurses that she could not feel anything below her chest. A CT scan was performed on Mrs. Paulino’s cervical spine, and the radiologist found that part of the medical hardware replaced by Dr. Raben was extending into the spine’s central canal and was likely contributing to the impingement of Mrs. Paulino’s spinal cord. The radiologist also found that a bone was extended into the epidural space approximately five to seven millimeters. After reviewing the CT scan, Dr. Raben performed a third surgery on Mrs. Paulino. The third surgery was also performed on December 17, 2007. After that surgery, Mrs. Paulino could barely move her arms, had pain in her neck, and could not feel her legs. At the time the appeal was filed, Mrs. Paulino remained unable to walk.
Judge(s): Robert L. Brown
Jurisdiction: Arkansas Supreme Court
Related Categories: Employment , Expert Witness , Malpractice , Torts
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