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PA Judge Upholds $10 Million Verdict in Medical Malpractice Case

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uzerne County, PA, Court of Common Pleas Judge Lesa Gelb denied a medical clinic's motion to appeal a $10 million medical malpractice verdict where two doctors failed to diagnose a teenage patient with a severely infected cyst.

Last May a jury awarded damages for past and future suffering, embarrassment, humiliation, disfigurement and loss of enjoyment of life for Joseph Shimko of Nanticoke, PA, who was 17 when he visited the clinic with his mother.

He came to the clinic complaining of a possible hemorrhoid, but the doctors did not examine him. Now 21, Shimko developed complex pilonidal disease, which required aggressive treatment and eight surgeries, leaving him with permanent disfigurement and lifelong problems.

The jury found that the Geisinger Clinic and physicians Stephen Evans, D.O. and Christian Basque, M.D. were negligent because they failed to properly treat Shimko and misdiagnosed him on two separate occasions over a 14-month period.

“It’s been a long road for Joe Shimko and we are thrilled the jury took into account what he’s been through and how he will suffer from this malpractice for the rest of his life,” said Attorney Melissa Scartelli of Scartelli Olszewski, P.C., lead counsel for the plaintiff. She was assisted by her law partner, Peter Paul Olszewski, Jr.

Scartelli Olszewski, P.C., of Scranton, PA, was founded in 2001 and handles personal injury and wrongful death cases for medical malpractice victims.

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