POINT PLEASANT – An Ohio man claims he required a heart transplant after doctors failed to quickly diagnose him with a heart attack.

Thomas Masters filed a lawsuit Oct. 26 in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of West Virginia against Dr. Robert Holley and Pleasant Valley Hospital.

Masters claims Pleasant Valley Hospital admitted him on July 8, 2007, after he arrived complaining of back and gastric pain, right upper quadrant pain and chest pain.

All of Masters' symptoms while he stayed at the hospital, including high levels Troponin T and CKMB at 12:30 a.m. on July 8, 2007, indicated Masters suffered from an evolving heart attack, according to the complaint.

An EKG taken at 5:45 p.m. on July 8, 2007, indicated Masters was suffering a major heart attack, the suit states.

"Defendants were guilty of negligent conduct by negligently failed (sic) to properly diagnose and treat Plaintiff in that he was suffering from a myocardial infarction which, by the time it was properly diagnosed, permitted Plaintiff to suffer massive damage to his heart, which could have been avoided," the suit states. "This delay in diagnosing and treating Plaintiff for a cardiac problem resulted in Plaintiff suffering severe and permanent damage, requiring Plaintiff eventually to undergo a heart transplant."

In addition to his heart transplant, Masters has been disabled and forced to suffer impaired strength, has been severely disfigured and has been forced to incur medical costs because of the defendants' negligence, the complaint says. He also claims he suffered a great deal of mental pain and anguish, has been forced to endure severe pain, has suffered a permanent loss of health and has been required to submit to laboratory examinations.

In the two-count suit, Masters is seeking a judgment to fully compensate him for his damages, plus other relief the court deems just.

Lonnie C. Simmons and Joshua I. Barrett of Di Trapano, Barrett and DiPiero in Charleston will be representing him.

U.S. District Court case number: 3:09-cv-1098

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