Physicians sued for allegedly not properly adjusting woman’s pacemaker

By Michelle Keahey | Nov 10, 2012

NEW ORLEANS - A wrongful death lawsuit has been filed against two Louisiana physicians by the family of a deceased Orleans Parish woman who claim the doctors did not make proper adjustments to her pacemaker and defibrillator.

Belinda T. Lassalle and Anthony J. Timphony, each individually and on behalf of Rosemary Timphony, filed suit against Dr. Nicholas Pappas, Dr. David A. Myers and Medtronic Inc. on Sept. 18, 2012 in Jefferson Parish District Court. The defendants removed the case to federal court in New Orleans on Oct. 31.

According to the lawsuit, in September 2011, Rosemary Timphony underwent the placement of a dual chamber pacemaker and defibrillator at East Jefferson General Hospital. Following the surgery, Timphony experienced episodes of dizziness, shortness of breath, and accelerated heart rate. Defendant Dr. Pappas made adjustments to the pacemaker and defibrillator, but Timphony succumbed to heart failure on Sept. 20, 2011, the suit claims.

Defendants Dr. Pappas and Dr. Meyers are accused of negligence for failing to use due care, failing to properly diagnose Timphony’s medical condition or develop an appropriate plan of treatment prior to placement of the device, failing to properly adjust or correct the device, failing to properly recognize the severity and true nature of petitioner’s post-pacemaker condition, and negligent administration of medical care.

Defendant Medtronic is accused of negligence for the negligent manufacturing of the device or its components such that it was unsafe for its intended use, failing to adequately test the device, failing to adequately analyze the test results or correct the failures realized from the test, failing to report known issues with the device to the appropriate regulatory agencies, health care providers and other parties, negligent promotion and marketing of the device despite its known problems, and for failing to warn device users of its known problems.

On behalf of the deceased, Lassalle and Timphony is seeking an award of damages for pain and suffering, mental anguish, medical expenses, wrongful death, plus interest, court costs, and attorney’s fees.

The plaintiffs are represented by New Orleans attorneys John D. Sileo and Kevin P. Riche.

U.S. District Judge Carl J. Barbier is assigned to the case.

Case No. 2:12-cv-02649

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