A man accidentally recorded doctors insulting him while he was unconscious. “It’s probably tuberculous in the penis, so you’ll be alright,” one doctor said after seeing that the man took a drug used for genital irritation.
In Vienna, Virginia, a man was awarded $500,000 after he unintentionally recorded his own doctors insulting him and mocking him while he was under anesthesia.
Choosing to remain anonymous, the plaintiff sued anesthesiologist Dr. Tiffany Ingham and three other medical professionals, who were eventually released from the case. A Reston, Virginia, jury ordered Ingham, 42, and her practice to pay the plaintiff, according to the Washington Post.
The plaintiff’s phone was used to record post-procedure advice and aftercare instructions from his doctors during the colonoscopy procedure in April 2013.
After checking his phone, the plaintiff found he had accidentally recorded the entire examination and heard his doctors insulting him when he was unconscious.
Ingham was recorded mocking the plaintiff.
“After five minutes of talking to you in pre-op, I wanted to punch you in the face and man you up a little bit,” Ingham is recorded saying.
Ingham and others mocked the plaintiff for the medications he was taking. The plaintiff was taking Gabapentin, which was prescribed to treat an irritation in his genital area. A medical assistant touched the victim’s genitals and commented that she probably contracted a sexually transmitted infection.
Ingham is recorded saying to the assistant “You might get some syphilis on your arm or something,” then added, “It’s probably tuberculosis in the penis, so you’ll be all right.”
Typically the genital area is not involved in a colonoscopy.
Ingham signed a post-operative note that the plaintiff had hemorrhoids. According to the lawsuit, Ingham stated she planned to document hemorrhoids even though she found none.
The plaintiff claimed he experienced a lack of focus and anxiety and mental anguish after the incident. He said he had to be placed on anti-anxiety medications.
The plaintiff sued for intentional and negligent infliction of emotional distress, defamation, and violation of Virginia health codes and medical malpractice. The Washington Post reported the jury awarded the man $200,000 for medical malpractice, $100,000 for defamation, as well as the $200,000 in punitive damages.
Ingham was working out of the Aisthesis anesthesia practice. The Associated Press was told by an Aisthesis employee that Ingham no longer works there.