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Gold Coast Surgical Center Sued for Causing Anesthesia-Related Brain Injury

A well-known downtown Chicago surgical center, Gold Coast Surgicenter, is being sued by a male patient who claims an anesthesiologist negligently administered anesthetic agents, causing him to suffer cardiac arrest that caused brain damage. According to the filing, as a result of improper monitoring during a routine outpatient surgery to repair the patient’s knuckle, the patient suffered from ‘hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy and other irreversible neurologic brain damage and injury.’

Hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy (HIE) can occur when the brain has endured a period of time with either reduced oxygen to the brain or reduced oxygen in the blood. This diminished or fully restricted flow of oxygen to the brain causes serious brain damage. HIE is most frequently noted in birth injury cases of cerebral palsy. In adults, HIE is a concern during and after cardiac arrest.

Facility Lacked Standardized Policies and Procedures for Patient Monitoring and Resuscitation
The lawsuit alleges that the physician, Dr. Jeffrey Podnar, did not properly monitor the patient’s condition and the change in his breathing while under anesthesia, did not provide the required medical interventions necessary during resuscitation, and did not properly perform resuscitation that would have left the patient’s brain without irreversible damage.

The lawsuit also states that Gold Coast Surgicenter did not have procedures and policies in place for careful monitoring of patients under anesthesia, nor for what to do in case of an emergency resuscitation.

In addition to suing for the above mentioned counts of medical negligence, the plaintiff, Mr. Frutoso Salgado Diaz, is also suing for something called loss of consortium on behalf of his wife, who as a result of her husband’s brain injury has been forced to drastically alter her day-to-day life to ensure her husband is properly cared for.  This aspect of law accounts for the loss of livelihood of a spouse or family member of an injured victim due to the negligence of the defendant.

Gold Coast Surgicenter is located within Water Tower Place Mall on Michigan Avenue and allows eligible physicians of various specialities to perform surgeries on their patients within their facility in lieu of operating in a hospital.