CHARLESTON – A woman is suing a Charleston surgeon she claims was negligent during surgery and caused her damages.

On Feb. 3, 2014, Dominique Atkins was seen and evaluated by Dr. Michael Covelli for complaints of hyperthyroidism, according to a complaint filed March 1 in Kanawha Circuit Court.

Atkins claims she underwent a thyroidectomy performed by the defendant on Feb. 25, 2014, and that during the surgery, he injured both the left and right recurrent laryngeal nerves.

Following the surgery, Atkins suffered problems with hoarseness, chest tightness, shortness of breath and difficulty swallowing and was diagnosed with vocal cord paralysis and had to have a permanent tracheostomy, according to the suit.

Atkins claims she now suffers from permanent, severe and debilitating injuries due to Covelli’s negligent, careless, willful and wanton and/or reckless disregard of risk of harm.

The defendants’ failures were the proximate cause of Atkins requiring the placement of a permanent tracheostomy, according to the suit.

Atkins is seeking compensatory and punitive damages. She is being represented by Richard D. Lindsay and Matthew C. Lindsay.

The case is assigned to Circuit Judge Carrie Webster.

Kanawha Circuit Court case number: 16-C-309

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