When 20-year-old Lauren Wargo arrived at the plastic surgery center operated by Dr. Bryan Michelow for a simple mole removal procedure, she hoped to emerge from the procedure with an unsullied complexion and improved self-confidence. However, a fire broke out during the procedure, causing Wargo to sustain second-degree burns over her face and neck.
Wargo, under sedation, had been receiving oxygen through a face mask during the procedure. When Dr. Michelow began to use a cauterizing device known as a “bovie” to remove the mole, the electrical charge ignited the oxygen in the air, causing flames to erupt.
The jury found that Dr. Michelow failed to notify the anesthesia assistant that he was going to activate the bovie and to turn off the oxygen, as is standard practice. As a result, the jury in the case attributed 100% of the blame for the incident to the doctor. Furthermore, it was also found that Dr. Michelow later tried to conceal his mistake and lied to Wargo and her family about the events leading up to the fire, prompting them to add an additional $425,000 in punitive damages.
Have you or a loved one fallen victim to medical malpractice? We can help you determine the best course of action in your case. Contact the attorneys at The Heller Law Firm for a free consultation, or call us direct at 866-461-5791. You will hear from us either the same day or within 24 hours.