CHARLESTON - A man is suing two physicians after he claims they were negligent in their care of him after he was injured in an ATV accident.
On April 30, 2012, Ronnie D. Stephens was admitted to Logan Regional Medican Center by EMS due to injuries sustained in an ATV rollover accident, according to a complaint filed May 21 in Kanawha Circuit Court.
Stephens claims he was transferred to Charleston Area Medical Center with a right temporal contusion, left subdural hematoma, multiple rib fractures, bilateral pulmonary contusions, right scapular fracture, right hemothorax, right clavicular fracture and cardiac contusion.
On May 23, 2012, Stephens was transferred to Select Specialty Hospital for further therapy and rehabilitation in order to be able to be released home, according to the suit.
Stephens claims despite being restrained, over the next several days, he removed multiple nasogastric tubes and Dr. Hatem Mahmoud Hossino was consulted on May 28, 2012, for the placement of a percutaneous endoscopic gastronomy tube, which was performed on June 1, 2012.
There were no post-procedure orders by Hossino, other than a telephone order to place the tube to bed side drainage for 24 hours and Dr. Lester Labus gave a telephone order to start tube feedings when the PEG tube was okay to use, according to the suit. A later order was given by a nurse practitioner to protect the tube with an abdominal binder.
Stephens claims despite this order, he managed to pull the PEG tube out within a very short time and Hossino gave a telephone order telling the nursing staff to insert a foley catheter into the PEG site.
There is no evidence that Hossino ever checked on Stephens after this complication until June 5, 2012, when he was consulted to place a dialysis catheter, according to the suit.
Stephens claims an abdominal x-ray for tube placement was performed on June 2, 2012, and he had developed a fever of 102.7 degrees.
On June 5, 2012, Hossino placed the dialysis catheter without any evidence of having evaluated Stephens' abdomen and the following day, he attempted to repeat the endoscopic insertion of the feeding tube and found that the foley catheter was not in the stomach, so he placed a nasogastric tube, according to the suit.
Stephens claims he was eventually take to the operating room that evening, where his abdomen was opened and several days' worth of tube feeds were washed out and a formal gastrostomy was placed.
On June 7, 2012, Stephens was transferred to Charleston Memorial's ICU, where he eventually recovered, but with severe and permanent injuries, including permanent and irreversible renal damage, according to the suit.
Stephens claims Hossino and Labus owed him a duty to skillfully, prudently and thoroughly diagnose, care, treat, advise and observe him in a manner as would a reasonably prudent physician who was confronted with and by similar conditions and circumstances, according to the suit.
The defendants breached their duty and were negligent in their care of Stephens, according to the suit.
Stephens is seeking compensatory damages.
He is being represented by Lonnie C. Simmons of DiTrapano, Barrett, DiPiero, McGinley & Simmons PLLC. The case has been assigned to Circuit Judge Paul Zakaib Jr.
Kanawha Circuit Court case number: 14-C-940