In 2004, a 42-year-old mother of five sought medical treatment at a Port Jervis hospital for a low sodium level. Something went terribly wrong and the woman was left with severe brain damage. She has been living for years in a rehabilitation facility in Pennsylvania. She looks forward each week to Saturday. That is the day her husband travels to Pennsylvania to take his wife home for the night.
Her brain injury caused her to lose much of her physical movement and much of her ability to speak. Recently a five-year-old medical malpractice lawsuit went before a jury related to the woman’s plight. After hearing the evidence the jury deliberated. Ultimately, the jury returned its verdict in favor of the woman.
The woman sued the hospital and the doctor and a nurse at the facility, arguing the medical personnel gave her too much sodium too quickly in attempting to treat her condition. The woman argued the rapid influx of sodium during her treatment caused her an irreversible brain injury. The jury agreed and returned a large verdict in the woman’s favor. Her husband knows the legal battle it is not over yet. The defendants are appealing the verdict.
The family hopes the damages award in the medical malpractice case will allow the woman to return home full-time. The money will allow for the around the clock, in-home care the woman needs. Her injury has left her with the cognitive ability of a child. She communicates primarily by writing short notes, but can speak a few words at a time, according to her husband. The entire family plans to remain involved.
The five children, who were in their teens when their mother suffered the brain injury, are all now grown. They all attended college. The woman’s three daughters studied areas that will benefit their mother; one studied speech pathology, one daughter studied occupational therapy and the third daughter studied nutrition. The two sons reportedly went into the field of financial services and help their father out with managing the bills.