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Columbia Personal Injury Lawyer > Blog > Personal Injury > South Carolina Court Awards $10 Million To Family Of Woman Whose Doctor Missed Opportunity To Diagnose Cancer

South Carolina Court Awards $10 Million To Family Of Woman Whose Doctor Missed Opportunity To Diagnose Cancer


One of the scariest things a doctor can tell you is that they need to do more tests to diagnose or rule out cancer.  It is a great relief when the test results come back and the doctor is sure that the tumor is benign, the image on an ultrasound or X-ray is not a malignant lesion, or that your blood test results do not indicate cancer.  If the doctor simply tells you that you need more tests but then doesn’t follow up with you about them, what should you do?  Most patients are not oncologists and would not know when to insist on the test.  Getting a second opinion is an option, but it is much easier if your health insurance will pay for it.  Whether it is appropriate for a doctor to tell a patient the equivalent of “don’t worry about it” varies on a case-by-case basis; only doctors in the same subspecialist of medicine can have an authoritative opinion on whether a doctor’s actions were within the standard of care.  If your illness got worse because a doctor failed to order a test after telling you that you would need it, contact a Columbia personal injury lawyer.

Doctor Sees Lesion on Patient’s Kidney, but Does Not Have the Lesion Removed

In August 2010, Joann Bannister was 68 years old, and Dr. Philip Kinder of Columbia Urological Associates diagnosed her with a lesion on her kidney and told her he would need to remove it.  Dr. Kinder scheduled a surgery to remove the lesion, but then canceled the surgery and told Bannister that it was unnecessary to remove the lesion at this time.  Eight months later, Bannister visited her primary care physician Dr. Jerry Robinson and told him about the lesion. Dr. Robinson told her that he would monitor the lesion and that it may need to be removed in the future, but he did not perform any further tests to monitor the lesion.

In August 2011, Bannister returned to Dr. Robinson, complaining of back pain.  He ordered an ultrasound, and the radiologist told Bannister that more evaluation was necessary, but the radiologist never notified Bannister’s doctors.  In June 2012, Bannister ordered another ultrasound, which showed that the lesion had grown.  He referred her to an oncologist, who determined that the lesion was cancerous, and the cancer had already spread beyond her kidney.  Bannister died in October 2012 at age 70.

Bannister’s husband Adolf filed a medical malpractice lawsuit against Columbia Medical Associates, Columbia Urological Associates, and the doctors who had treated Bannister during the last two years of her life.  After a jury trial, the court ordered the defendants who had not already paid settlements to Adolf Bannister to pay $10,000,000 in damages.

Let Us Help You Today

The medical malpractice lawyers at the Stanley Law Group can help you seek damages if your doctor failed to diagnose an illness until after it had become difficult to treat.  Contact The Stanley Law Group in Columbia, South Carolina or call (803)799-4700 for a free initial consultation.



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