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Tuesday, May 21, 2024 | Back issues
Courthouse News Service Courthouse News Service

Patient Says Chiropractor Ruined His Back

DALTON, Ga. (CN) - A patient says his chiropractor snapped off a piece of a spinal disc that ended up lodging into his nerve roots. He claims the botched spinal manipulation caused excruciating pain, numbness in his legs, and left him shuffling with a walker.

Michael Doran says he started feeling numbness and tingling in his legs within minutes of leaving his appointment with Dr. John Wall. Doran says he underwent five more "adjustments" before an MRI was ordered, "due to concerns that [he] could lose control of his bowels."

In his complaint in Whitfield County Court, Doran says his back was not even hurting that badly the day he got his first "adjustment," in a 20-minute procedure.

He heard a "pop," he says, but did not think much of it until numbness and tingling spread down his legs. By 2 p.m. that same day, Doran says, he had to leave work because the pain and tingling had gotten so bad.

The next morning, he says, he could not get out of bed due to "stabbing, excruciating pain," and he called Wall for help. He claims that without giving him an MRI, Wall diagnosed his problem as "sciatica," a condition that Wall said needed further adjustments: roughly $1,500 worth.

Doran says he underwent five more treatments and still could not walk without a walker.

"Finally, Dr. Wall suggested that Mr. Doran undergo an MRI due to concerns that Mr. Doran could lose control of his bowels," according to the complaint.

The neurosurgeon who looked at Doran's MRI results found a broken vertebral disc lodged against his "thecal sac and nerve roots centrally" and a large annular tear, and performed back surgery on him almost immediately.

Although the surgery helped some, Doran says he still walks with a limp and suffers from extreme numbness, throbbing and tingling. He seeks damages for pain and suffering, lost wages, medical expenses, loss of consortium and professional negligence. Named as defendants are John C.B. Wall, D.C., and the Dalton Clinic of Chiropractic.

Doran is represented by Cale Conley with Conley Griggs in Atlanta.

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