On August 23, 2017, an Appellate Court covering Brooklyn upheld a jury's award of $1,000,000 to a medical malpractice claimant whose colon was perforated during a routine colonoscopy. The jury found Jeffrey S. Aronoff, M.D. (colon -rectal surgeon) committed two separate departures (errors) from accepted standards of medical care in: 1) failing to advise the patient of the signs and symptoms of a bowel perforation; and, 2) failing to properly treat the infected perforation after it had been found on a CT scan. Physician's fairly argue that a perforation of the bowel is a known and accepted risk of a colonoscopy. However, the "accepted risk of the procedure" defense does not excuse the subsequent injuries which could have been avoided if the perforation was promptly detected and treated before the inevitable occurs-- fecal matter from the colon spilling into the abdominal cavity causing infection and sepsis.
The appellate court also agreed that the $1,000,000 in damages awarded for pain and suffering was not excessive considering that the patient was forced to undergo three surgeries due to the bowel perforation: 1) "a Hartmann procedure in which a foot-long section of his colon was removed, requiring a colostomy"; 2) a surgery to reverse the colostomy; and, 3) a surgery to repair a hernia that developed due to the Hartmann and reversal surgeries. According to the New York State Physician Profile website, Dr. Araonoff has settled 4 medical malpractice lawsuits between 2012 and 21015. See, Gaspard v Aronoff, 2017 WL 3612031