Jury Orders Doc to Pay $2.7 Million in Med Mal Case

Dr. Carlos Zevallos has been found liable by an Ohio jury in a medical malpractice suit. He has now been ordered to pay $2.7 million for prescribing a toxic mixture of drugs, which lead to a terminal disease.

In 2006, Debbie Neifer consulted with Dr. Zevallos, looking for treatment for her rheumatoid arthritis. He increased her dosage of an anti-rheumatoid arthritis drug known as Methotrexate (which she had previously been prescribed by another doctor). Subsequently, in 2010, Dr. Zevallos also prescribed her Leflumonide, to supplement the Methotrexate.

When coupled, the drugs have potential to cause severe lung disease. Neifer was prescribed this deadly mix of arthritis medication, eventually leading to her contracting a terminal lung disease. She ultimately died, leaving behind a husband and a son.

Here’s what happened: Seven months after being prescribed the combination of drugs, Neifer went for a routine checkup; that’s when Dr. Zevallos heard a crackling noise in her lungs. Alarmed, the doctor ordered Neifer to take a chest X-ray. Dr. Zevallos received the results of the test the next day, with comments from the radiologist, saying that Neifer could potentially have lung disease. According to The National Trial Lawyers, had more testing been done at that time, it would’ve been determined that she was suffering from interstitial lung disease.

Rather than inform her of the abnormal X-ray, order any follow ups or change her medication and dosage, Dr. Zevallos did nothing. Nine months later, Neifer was rushed to an emergency room with breathing complications. She learned then that she had developed a terminal lung disease because of the medication she was taken.

She spent months in hospitals, wheel chairs, nursing homes and away from her house, family and work. One month after the jury handed down the verdict, on Jan. 18, Neifer passed away.

The jury decided that medical malpractice in this case occurred in the doctor’s failure to inform her of an abnormal test result, and in the blatant and continuous errs in drug prescription.

Cohen Placitella & Roth PC has distinguished itself as proven leaders in medical malpractice litigation, and has won multi-million dollar recoveries in a variety of these suits. We invite you to contact Chris Placitella, Esq., today for a consultation at 888-375-7600 and discuss your case.



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