2010 case study - Rockland

In 2010, our client from Rockland, Maine was a belted driver lawfully traveling through a four way intersection in Camden, Maine when he was violently struck by another vehicle in a T-bone fashion. The force of the impact was so great that our client’s vehicle spun around 180 degrees colliding with an oil truck and then a third vehicle. Our client experienced light headedness, dizziness, and back, neck, and shoulder pain at the scene of the accident requiring transport by ambulance for emergency medical treatment. He was diagnosed at the emergency department with AC joint separation in the shoulder, contusions and back pain. A sling was prescribed and our client was advised to seek follow-up care through his primary care physician. His primary care provider then referred him to an orthopedist for further evaluation and treatment of his shoulder injury. After a MRI of the shoulder, our client was referred to physical therapy for treatment of what was opined to be bruising of his rotator cuff and possible tears to the tendons. Use of anti-inflammatory medication, icing and limitation of activities was also advised. Unfortunately, physical therapy was extremely difficult for our client and actually significantly increased his shoulder pain to the point that he was discharged after only few sessions. In the meantime, his ongoing back and neck injuries since the accident necessitated close to two months of chiropractic and acupuncture treatment for pain relief.

After physical therapy failed to relieve our client’s shoulder symptoms, he was evaluated by an orthopedic surgeon who opined that our client had sustained a probable labrum tear and a complete tear or high grade partial tear of his tendon due to the trauma from the motor vehicle accident. Surgical treatment to repair the tears was required and then months of physical therapy, continued use of a sling, pain medication and finally, a home exercise program. The recovery process was slow at points for our client and there was a gap in treatment which arguably further slowed the process. However, after close to a year of treatment including shoulder surgery, pain and anti-inflammatory medication, at or near nine (9) months of physical therapy, and close to two (2) months of chiropractic treatment our client was released to an ongoing home exercise program to maintain his progress.

Our firm asserted a claim for personal injuries on behalf of our client against the driver of the motor vehicle that caused the accident. It was asserted that the driver’s negligence in the operation of his motor vehicle caused the accident including, by his failure to yield the right of way as determined by the police officers who investigated the accident. Damages were sought for our client’s medical expenses, pain and suffering, and ongoing intermittent pain through the driver’s motor vehicle insurance.

Despite arguable overtreatment, a gap in treatment, no provable lost wages, pre-existing conditions, substantial outstanding medical bills and a health insurer lien on any recovery, our client’s claim was resolved for multiple times his medical expenses without need to file a civil action in court. Our client was very satisfied and appreciative of the outcome of his case, especially in light of the successful post-settlement bill and lien reductions we were able to secure on his behalf.

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