CAMC blamed for Boone man's death

MADISON -- A professional medical malpractice suit against Charleston Area Medical Center and two Madison defendants is in Boone Circuit Court concerning a 2011 death. Victoria Stone, individually and as Administratrix of the estate of Ricci A. Stone, brings the action through attorneys Paul T. Farrell Jr. of Huntington and J. Robert Rogers of Charleston. The case was filed April 26. Complaint says R.A. Stone had no significant medical history when he went to CAMC complaining of flu-like symptoms March 13, 2009. "He also reported recent onset of intermittent episodes of tarry, black stools," according to complaint. Diagnosed with "anemia secondary to gastrointestinal hemorrhage," Stone was admitted in the early morning of March 14. Tests included an abdominal ultrasound due to diagnosed abnormal liver function. That ultrasound procedure and lack of follow-up is mentioned frequently in the suit, which says "No mention of the abnormal ultrasound report was recorded in the discharge summary nor discharge instructions." Stone was discharged March 16 and established primary care with Dr. Robert B. Atkins at Madison Medical, PLLC both named defendants with CAMC in his litigation. Several office visits led to comprehensive lab work for "pernicious anemia," which revealed elevated liver enzymes. Atkins is accused in complaint of failing to follow-up on an abnormal test result and Stone went to Boone Memorial's emergency room in December 2010, where he was diagnosed with "early liver failure," then transferred by ambulance to CAMC and diagnosed with end stage liver disease, according to complaint, and a recommended candidate for liver transplant. Suit contends "Timely diagnosis of liver disease following the 03.16.2009 abnormal ultrasound and/or the 05.21.2009 abnormal liver enzyme test would have prevented the death of Mr. Stone ..." Concluding wrongful death, complaint wants jury awards jointly and/or severally of general and special damages, medical expenses, reasonable funeral expenses, as well as any other remedy permitted by state law. Morgantown Attorney P. Gregory Haddad is defense counsel for Atkins and Madison Medical, with Rita Massie Biser of South Charleston serving CAMC. Trial is projected for next May in Judge William S. Thompson's court. Boone Circuit Court case number: 12-C-107

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