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Cancer Patient Wins Malpractice Suit

A cancer patient from San Diego recently won $5.7 million in a case, which accused his doctor of missing his symptoms until it was too late.

The San Diego Superior Court jury has finally settled the lawsuit, filed by Regis M. Reilly against dermatologist James C. Powers, and the outcome is bittersweet.

The Claim

In August 2006, Reilly paid a visit to Powers due to concern about some bumps on his shoulder. Reilly claims the doctor failed to biopsy the cyst at the time.

By the time Reilly was referred to another doctor for a second opinion in December, claims N. Denise Asher, Reilly’s lawyer, the cancer had already spread.

“This was a particularly wicked cancer,” explains Asher, “It grew very fast and it needed to be caught immediately.”

Reilly underwent several surgeries to try to remove the cancer from his shoulder but it metastasized into other parts of his body and was concluded to be terminal.

“Essentially, the doctor just missed it,” says Asher.

Bittersweet Victory

Asher believes that aside from the money, the verdict, which was announced last week, is what’s truly important.

“My clients can hear someone tell them that they have heard them and they understand,” says Asher.

According to Asher, if the cancer had been caught earlier, there would have been a 95% chance that Reilly would have recovered.

Reilly is now confined to his house and receives 24-hour care.


Have you or a loved one suffered as the result of a doctor’s error? Contact us today to speak with an experienced attorney about your legal options.

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