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Physicians' Referral Leads to South Dakota Malpractice Claims


Domina Law Group has undertaken a South Dakota medical malpractice at a Physician’s request. The case, which involves the death of Jack Becker, age 73, has been brought in Sioux Falls on behalf of Mr. Becker’s wife and children.

In 2001, Jack Becker was hospitalized for treatment for an ulcer. No complications were expected. When the ulcer was diagnosed at an Emergency Care Facility, the clinic doctor also noted that Jack had a pulsating abdominal aneurysm of substantial size. He referred Jack for immediate hospitalization and described his condition as dangerous.

Mr. Becker was hospitalized for three days. His ulcer was treated, but his aneurysm was ignored. He was discharged and ordered to go home, even as his wife protested and he proclaimed that he did not feel well. When asked about the aneurysm, the discharging physician told the Beckers to see a vascular surgeon within the next few days. Mrs. Becker insisted this be done sooner so an appointment was made in a vascular surgeon’s clinical office setting outside the hospital for the afternoon of his discharge.

Even after this arrangement, Mrs. Becker was uneasy with her husband’s departure from the hospital. Finally, the hospital’s nursing staff insisted the Beckers leave.

A couple hours later, Mr. and Mrs. Becker were in the waiting of the vascular surgeon when Jack became suddenly and abruptly ill. His abdominal aortic aneurysm, which had been measured at 9 cm x 8 cm in the hospital, had burst. Jack was taken to the hospital, was never revived and died almost immediately.

The Becker family seeks compensation from the discharging physician and hospital, both of whom I believe to have breached their responsibilities for wrongful discharge, failure to diagnose, failure to recommend surgery, and failure to provide suitable treatment.

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