Jury awards $100K in Oregon malpractice suit

MEDFORD, Ore. — An Oregon gynecologist who removed a patient’s healthy ovary and left a piece of plastic in her body after a 2007 robotic surgery has been ordered to pay more than $100,000.

The Mail Tribune newspaper reported that U.S. District Court jurors convicted Dr. Daniel Laury of medical malpractice on Thursday after hearing two days of testimony from the plaintiffs and seven physicians.

The lawsuit filed by the woman and her husband sought nearly $1 million in damages. The jury of four women and three men awarded more than $10,500 in medical expenses and $100,000 as compensation for physical pain and mental anguish.

Laury’s attorney, Thomas Armosino Jr., did not immediately respond to a message left by The Associated Press seeking comment. A number listed for Laury was disconnected.

Laury used a da Vinci robotic device that malfunctioned during Michelle Elsey’s Sept. 28, 2007, surgery at Providence Medford Medical Center in Medford, according to hospital records. Providence was not a party in the suit.

Foreign objects were revealed in Elsey’s body during a CT scan in Bozeman, Mont., more than three years after the robotic surgery. A laparoscopy sheath and extraneous coils used as birth-control devices were removed from her pelvis at a Bozeman hospital.

Elsey, formerly of White City, Ore., was suffering pelvic pain in 2007 when she consented to the surgical removal of her right ovary and fallopian tube, as well as her appendix. But the organs were deemed normal and functioning following the surgery. Laury already had performed a sterilization procedure on Elsey in April 2007.

Jurors heard testimony that Laury was not informed of any damage to the robotic surgical equipment, although Elsey experienced pain after the procedure.

Laury now lists Hermiston, Ore., as the location of his practice.

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