Court of Claims: Family of Man Whose Airway Was Ignited by Laser Receives $800,000 in Medical Negligence Case
The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center has agreed to an $800,000 settlement with the family of Charles E. Cooper, who died four years after a laser surgical procedure in his throat caused a fire.
Cooper underwent the procedure in July 2010 to treat a lesion on one of his vocal cords. According to the lawsuit filed by his wife in the Court of Claims, a fired ignited in his airway during the surgery because 100 percent oxygen was flowing when the laser was used. Following the treatment, Cooper had to have a tube placed in his throat to breathe, suffered multiple complications, and lost much of his ability to taste and to smell, court documents state. He died in May 2014.
The complaint asserted that the employees involved with the surgery were negligent. The medical center denied all allegations.
Before the case went to trial, the parties settled for $800,000. The agreement states that the claims are disputed and that the medical center admits no wrongdoing. The court approved the settlement on Feb. 9. The OSU Medical Center also paid the Coopers $1.45 million in a 2012 medical negligence case.
To access information on other cases, visit the Court of Claims website.
Please note: Opinion summaries are prepared by the Office of Public Information for the general public and news media. Opinion summaries are not prepared for every opinion, but only for noteworthy cases. Opinion summaries are not to be considered as official headnotes or syllabi of court opinions. The full text of this and other court opinions are available online.