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Florie and Miller Obtain Defense Verdict for Family Practice Physician

Mike Florie and Joe Miller obtained a defense verdict for a family practice physician in a case alleging wrongful death due to over-prescription of narcotic pain medication.  The patient, a female in her mid-50s, was in a serious car accident and suffered multiple injuries, including fractures in her cervical and thoracic spine.  She was eventually released from the hospital and began follow up treatment w/her family physician for pain from these injuries, in addition to primary medical care.  The physician started her on multiple medications, including Oxycontin, a sustained release form of Oxycodone.  The physician continued this medication in varying dosages for 28 months, along with other medications, including additional pain medications.  The patient was found deceased on her kitchen floor, and an autopsy revealed multiple medications in her system, all prescribed by the defendant physician.  The cause of death according to the autopsy was mixed drug intoxication.  The plaintiff alleged that the defendant physician prescribed too much pain medication for too long, allowing addiction and resulting in respiratory depression and death.  The plaintiff presented expert testimony in the fields of family medicine, addictionology and forensic pathology.  The defense presented expert testimony in the fields of family medicine and forensic pathology, and contended that the cause of death was arrhythmia due to a previous septal infarct, revealed at autopsy. 

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