Updates to our Terms of Use

We are updating our Terms of Use. Please carefully review the updated Terms before proceeding to our website.

Monday, May 20, 2024 | Back issues
Courthouse News Service Courthouse News Service

Patient Says Spinal|Surgeon Was Drunk

FORT WORTH (CN) - A neurosurgeon was drunk while he operated on the wrong discs of a woman's spine, an error he omitted from the surgical report, the patient claims in court.

Amanda and Donald Powley sued Dr. James Kaufman and the Center for Neurological Disorders, in Tarrant County Court.

Amanda Powley says she sought treatment from the defendants for neck and back pain from a 2010 car accident.

She says she agreed to go under the knife at Baylor Surgical Hospital in Fort Worth, as suggested by Dr. Kaufman. She was to receive a "C5 to C7 cervical discectomy and fusion as well as T11/12 decompressive laminectomy," according to the complaint.

However, "On October 11, 2010, James Kevin Kaufman, M.D. arrived shortly before noon smelling of alcohol and after a loud and confrontational discussion with Baylor's Roger Rhodes, performed a C5-7 anterior cervical discectomy and fusion and apparently a partial laminectomy at T10 even though James Kevin Kaufman, M.D.'s operative report never mentions a thoracic laminectomy," the complaint states.

"Not surprisingly, Mrs. Powley's thoracic condition did not improve and James Kevin Kaufman, M.D., never disclosed or discussed with Mrs. Powley the actual location of the thoracic surgery."

Amanda Powley says she didn't find relief until another doctor operated on the correct section of her back 18 months later.

The Powleys seek damages for negligence. They are represented by Robert Hammer of Fort Worth.

Categories / Uncategorized

Subscribe to Closing Arguments

Sign up for new weekly newsletter Closing Arguments to get the latest about ongoing trials, major litigation and hot cases and rulings in courthouses around the U.S. and the world.