In 2016, appellee Lesa Swanson had pain in her lower back and legs and consulted Dr. Anil Kumar Kesani. After there was no improvement in the next 6 months from non-surgical treatment and physiotherapy, Dr. Kesani suggested that she consider surgery. Swanson agreed to undergo a combination of two spinal-fusion surgeries.…law, Mitchell v. Swanson, 2020

During the course of second surgery, Dr Kesani misplaced some of the screws so that they were drilled directly into the nerves in the center of the spine leading to Swanson experiencing numbness, weakness, and extreme pain upon regaining consciousness. Dr. Kesani conducted a CT and then performed a second surgery, to apparently correct the mistake, but did not admit making it.

Swanson filed suit against Dr. Kesani, alleging that his medical negligence left her with extensive, permanent injuries. Supporting her claims, Dr. J. Bob Blacklock, a Houston-based neurosurgeon, gave a seventeen-page expert report that was included in the lawsuit. However, the trial court, citing inadequate and deficient reports, dismissed the case.

The Texas Court of Appeals reversed the trial court’s decision to dismiss Swanson’s motion saying that while the reports are indeed deficient, they are not so devoid of substance that they constitute no reports at all. Swanson has therefore right to remand and not an outright dismissal of her claims. Now the trial court must consider whether to grant a thirty-day extension to Swanson to cure the deficiencies.

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Kayur V. Patel, MD, MRO, FACP, FACPE, FACHE, FACEP
KayurVPatel@ExpertWitness.MD