Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly
February 23, 2004
Verdicts & Settlements
Excess Skin Removed During Infant’s Circumcision
The minor plaintiff was born on Feb. 12, 1997. According to the medical records, the defendant performed a circumcision on the minor plaintiff five days after his birth. Following the procedure, the minor plaintiff’s penis bled profusely requiring several sutures. His hematocrit dropped from 45.9 to 34.1 after the circumcision.
After being discharged from the hospital, the minor plaintiff was referred to a pediatric urologist who examined the minor plaintiff and noted that his penis was virtually devoid of shaft skin. The urologist noted that the condition of the minor plaintiff’s penis was highly suggestive of excess penile shaft skin being removed at the time of circumcision.
In October 1998, the minor plaintiff underwent reconstructive surgery by the urologist. An additional reconstructive procedure reportedly was necessary in order to attempt to rectify the damage done during the circumcision. The case was resolved when the minor plaintiff was almost 7 years old; he did not sustain any loss of sensation or function. The case resolved mainly on the minor plaintiff’s claims of pain and suffering and the residual scarring caused as a result of the initial procedure and the subsequent surgical procedures.
The defendant maintained that he was not negligent in performing the circumcision. He further maintained that the minor plaintiff’s medical condition predisposed him to excessive bleeding, that the clamp used carried with it the risk of excess skin being removed and that the subsequent surgery was unnecessary.
The case settled on the eve of the second trial date for $110,000.
Type of action: Medical Malpractice
Injuries alleged: Scarring
Name of case: Withheld
Court/case #: Withheld
Tried before judge or jury: N/A (settled)
Amount of settlement: $110,000
Date: September 2003
Attorneys: Gregg J. Pasquale (of counsel) and Melissa A. White (of counsel), Keches & Mallen, Taunton (for the plaintiff)