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$10.5 Million Medical Malpractice Settlement Prior to Jury Selection


As jury selection was about to begin before Cook County Circuit Court Judge John Morrissey in Chicago, Illinois, the parties agreed to a $10.5 million medical malpractice settlement on behalf of a 38 year-old postal service employee who was rendered an incomplete paraplegic due to an undiagnosed abscess in his spine. Dennis McCaffrey and his wife, Lori, were represented by Chicago medical malpractice attorney David Barry, Jr., a partner at Corboy & Demetrio.

Medical Malpractice

Dennis McCaffrey developed an infection two weeks after he had undergone successful spinal surgery at Loyola University Medical Center. He went to his primary care physician, Dr. Cynthia Victor, with complaints of fever and severe back pain. On February 6, 2003, she hospitalized him at LaGrange Memorial Hospital where he developed progressive neurological deficits that were not addressed by the nursing staff nor the on-call physician, Dr. Daniel Chen, for eight hours. When Dr. Victor learned of McCaffrey’s neurological deficits, she claimed to have ordered his immediate transfer to Loyola, which was prepared to receive him and operate on him. The nurses at LaGrange disputed that verbal order was given and the patient was not transferred for another six hours. By the time he arrived at Loyola on February 7, 2003, he had lost all motor and sensory function in his legs. Surgery at Loyola restored only patchy sensation and minimal motor function. McCaffrey remains an incomplete paraplegic.

Medical Malpractice Attorneys

After the settlement, Attorney Barry stated,

This was a case that never should have happened. There were so many opportunities to diagnose and treat this condition before it caused permanent damage. It was gut wrenching to watch the chronology unfold. No one stepped up to take responsibility for Dennis when he started to show signs and symptoms of the abscess.

Medical Malpractice Settlement

Adventist LaGrange Memorial Hospital was represented by Richard Donohue and Sherri Arrigo of Donohue, Brown, and contributed $7.5 million to the settlement. Dr. Victor and her medical group were represented by Sheldon Brenner and Scott Britton of Brenner, Ford and contributed $2 million. Dr. Daniel Chen was represented by Rudy Schade of Cassiday, Schade & Gloor and contributed $1 million.

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