Home Medical Malpractice Malpractice verdict vs. Miami FL area Dr. Kingsley Chin

Malpractice verdict vs. Miami FL area Dr. Kingsley Chin

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A screw left in a Hialeah Gardens woman’s spinal canal after back surgery was worth $902,000, a jury ruled, after a medical malpractice trial in Miami-Dade civil court last month.

The defendants were Dr. Kingsley Chin, a licensed Florida doctor since 2004, and Chin’s Less Institute Clinical, which operates as LES Clinic.

Chin and the clinic are now in Hollywood. But they were in Fort Lauderdale in 2015 when the American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery certified surgeon performed two spinal cord surgeries on Nancy Lazo and left a metal screw in her spinal column following a surgery.

Within two weeks after seeing Chin for the last time in January 2016 and feeling numbness and pain in her left leg and foot, Lazo saw University of Miami Dr. Samuel Popinchalk.

“I remember seeing her, and I remember her being in a lot of pain when I first saw her, and I remember being surprised when I saw the imaging,” Popinchalk said in his deposition. When asked what surprised him about the imaging, he said, “That first visit, when I reviewed the imaging I saw a screw that was malpositioned.”

University of Miami doctors removed the screw, alleviating the pain. The jury’s verdict awarded Lazo $600,000 and her husband, David Labra, $302,000 for loss of consortium (one spouse can’t join the other in activities they used to enjoy together).

Lazo and Labra were represented by Jonathan Freidin and Whitney Untiedt of Freidin Brown.

In 2021, Chin was fined $8,000 plus $5,041 in investigative costs; ordered to take five hours of continuing medical education classes in spinal surgery; five hours in risk management; two hours in post-operative surgical management; and had a letter of concern issued against his license for a 2019 incident at Palmetto Lakes Surgical Center.

According to the administrative complaint filed by the Flroida Department of Health, after a 73-year-old man’s spinal surgery, the post-anesthesia care unit found “weakness in the patient’s upper extremities and an inability to move or feel any sensation in the patient’s lower extremities.”

Chin evaluated the patient as dealing with “spinal shock,” but sent the senior citizen home, instead of sending him to a hospital.

This story was originally published September 7, 2022 1:42 PM.

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Since 1989, David J. Neal’s domain at the Miami Herald has expanded to include writing about Panthers (NHL and FIU), Dolphins, old school animation, food safety, fraud, naughty lawyers, bad doctors and all manner of breaking news. He drinks coladas whole. He does not work Indianapolis 500 Race Day.

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