HUNTINGTON - A man is suing Cabell Huntington Hospital Inc. after he claims a physician failed to properly clean his wound and caused it to get infected.

On Dec. 9, 2011, Clyde Mitchell Copley was injured in an ATV accident and suffered a large laceration to his left medial ankle, according to a complaint filed Dec. 6 in Cabell Circuit Court.

Copley claims he was transported to Three Rivers Medical Center in Louisa, Ky., where the wound was evaluated and it was determined that he required a surgical consultation due to the depth of the ankle laceration.

Since there was no orthopedist or general surgeon available at Three Rivers, Copley was transferred to Cabell for access to a trauma surgeon/orthopedist, according to the suit.

Copley claims he arrived at Cabell at approximately 10:21 p.m. on Dec. 9, 2011, and an orthopedic consultation occurred at approximately 1 a.m. on Dec. 10, 2011, and no operative intervention was noted and care was returned to the staff emergency room physician.

The staff emergency room physician noted on examination that the wound was clean and proceeded to suture the wound at approximately 2:09 a.m. and Copley was discharged and sent home, according to the suit.

Copley claims on Dec. 13, 2011, he returned to Three Rivers and presented with erythema, swelling and dry gangrene of the left ankle. The erythema extended to the dorsum of the foot and up the leg and bloody drainage exuded from the closed wound.

The plaintiff was admitted and an orthopedist was consulted and Copley was taken to the operating room, where he underwent a left ankle and foot wound infection incision, drainage and wound VAC application, according to the suit.

Copley claims the wound was found to be contaminated with grass and his wound was debrided and properly cleaned.

Copley was required to use a wound VAC and treated at Three Rivers Medical Wound Care Center for many months before his wound was fully healed, according to the suit.

Copley claims the Cabell physician failed to remove grass from his wound before suturing and the failure to remove grass resulted in an infection that required surgery and care and treatment at a wound care center.

As a result of the defendant's breach of the standard of care by Cabell's physician, Copley underwent surgery, incurred medical expenses and endured mental and physical pain and suffering, according to the suit.

Copley is seeking compensatory damages with pre- and post-judgment interest. He is being represented by Michael C. Walker of Cyrus & Adkins.

The case has been assigned to Circuit Judge David M. Pancake.

Cabell Circuit Court case number: 13-C-938

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