Infection leads to medical malpractice lawsuit

By Louisiana Record reports | Nov 21, 2014

GRETNA – A man is suing his doctor and clinic after he allegedly contracted a serious infection when his pubic hair was shaven in preparation for a penile implant operation.

Timothy Heyden filed suit against Ochsner Medical Center–Westbank LLC, Dr. Ronald A. Chee-Awai, New Orleans Urologic Institute LLC and their insurers in the 24th Judicial District Court on Sept. 12.

Heyden contends that on July 7, 2010 he went to Ochsner Medical Center–Westbank to have a penile implant surgically installed when his pubic hair was shaven. The plaintiff asserts that it was shaven unbeknownst to him while under anesthesia and that when he awoke he saw what he believed to be ingrown hair follicles. Within a matter of a day the area became severely swollen, the suit says. Heyden claims that when he showed the affected area to Chee-Awai, he was told to put ice on the area.

The plaintiff alleges that over three weeks later on July 30, 2010 he had to undergo emergency surgery to excise necrotic tissue in the affected area at which time he was diagnosed with gangrene due to a moderate methicillin resistant staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) infection. Heyden contends that for three weeks after the surgery he had to undergo recovery in a nursing home.

The defendant is accused of failing to provide proper medical care, failing to provide a sterile and sanitary surgical environment, failing to properly train and supervise personnel, failing to practice medicine with necessary skill and prudence, failing to properly clean surgical equipment such as razors used for pre-operative shaving and failing to prescribe proper antibiotics post-surgery.

An unspecified amount in damages is sought for impairment, disability, physical pain and suffering, emotional pain and suffering, medical expenses and loss of enjoyment of life.

Heyden is represented by Isaac H. Soileau Jr. of New Orleans-based Soileau & Associates LLC.

The case has been assigned to Division I Judge Nancy A. Miller.

Case no. 742-371.

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