Patient alleges necrotizing fasciitis was misdiagnosed

A man is suing the Salem Township Hospital, claiming that doctors misdiagnosed his life-threatening condition and allowed it to worsen.

Plaintiffs Michael and Jean Garden filed the lawsuit in the St. Clair County Circuit Court against Nancy Zutshi, M.D., Tracy Caswell, and Salem Township Hospital, citing negligence.

According to the lawsuit, on May 14, 2022, Michael Garden, 65, went to the Salem Township Hospital (STH) emergency room to complain about redness, swelling and pain. The defendants allegedly misdiagnosed him with cellulitis, prescribed him an antibiotic and discharged him from the facility. On May 16, Garden went to St. Mary’s Hospital, complaining that his symptoms had worsened since he went to Salem Township. St. Mary’s Hospital (SSM) allegedly diagnosed him with necrotizing fasciitis and transported him to SSM Health St. Louis University Hospital (SLU) for emergency care.

SLU records indicated that Garden was critically ill with vital organ failure with a high probability of life threatening deterioration. Garden allegedly spent more than a month at SLU. He claims he was forced to undergo more than 16 surgeries and will have to undergo additional procedures in the future.

The lawsuit states that the defendants were negligent in their failure to properly diagnosis Garden’s condition, and negligently failed to provide proper treatment. As a result of the misdiagnosis, Michael’s life-threatening condition went undiagnosed and untreated, causing him to experience pain, suffering, mental anguish, disability, disfigurement. The lawsuit adds that Garden has incurred significant medical expenses and that he will continue to require medical care to recover from his injuries.

Jean Garden is included on the lawsuit because the defendants negligently caused her to lose her husband’s consortium and support.

The plaintiffs are seeking damages in excess of $50,000, plus court costs. and any other relief the court deems proper.

This article was first published in Madison Record.

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