SHERIDAN — What started as a simple knee surgery resulted in lifelong damages, according to Neal R. Schuman and those representing him in a civil lawsuit against Sheridan Memorial Hospital for negligence and medical malpractice.
According to the complaint filed by Schuman’s counsel, Schuman went in for knee replacement surgery July 2015.
After the surgery, Schuman faced complications with constipation, and a nurse performed an enema on Schuman after he said it hurt and asked her to stop the procedure. Court documents said during the procedure the administering nurse caused serious medical complications and that from July 30, 2015, to Aug. 6, 2015, the trauma caused by the enema went untreated. On July 31, Schuman was taken to the intensive care unit for his worsening condition.
On Aug. 6, more medical issues were discovered and surgery was scheduled. Court documents state that a diverting colostomy was necessary and, because of the emergent nature of the surgery, it was performed without Schuman’s informed consent. He also faced what the complaint describes as a life-threatening form of Fournier’s gangrene.
Court documents state that on Aug. 6, 8, 10 and 12, SMH conducted surgeries to remove damaged tissue from the man’s wounds.
Schuman now must carry a colostomy bag with him at all times.
The complaint said the administering nurse directly contributed to and caused Schuman’s injuries relating to the extent of the infection that led to the ultimate outcome. Counsel claims the nurse failed to accurately document Schuman’s conditions and did not seek the intervention of a physician.
The documents also claim the physician failed to investigate and treat the infection and damage caused by the enema.
The complaint claims that the sustained injuries and permanent colostomy bag caused pain, suffering, significant decrease in the quality of life, permanent impairment, inability to perform work and activities once enjoyed and emotional harm from the medical malpractice of the defendant and its employees.
Schuman’s wife, Anita Schuman, also suffered significant decrease in the quality of life, loss of companionship and society and has been required to assume the care of her husband. The complaint claims she has suffered emotional distress, loss of support and companionship and general and special damages.
Sheridan Memorial Hospital CEO Mike McCafferty responded to the allegations ahead of the estimated five- to six-day trial that started Monday in 4th Judicial District Court.
“In the case, we believe that we provided a high level of care to the patient and we are prepared to defend that position,” McCafferty said.