Testimony of Two Spine Surgeons Not Enough to Convince a Gwinnett County Jury That Plaintiff Should Recover
On July 12, 2017, following a two and one-half day trial, Jonathan Adelman obtained a defense verdict from a Gwinnett County jury. Plaintiff claimed that a minor rear-end collision caused a symptomatic herniated disc and necessitated a lumbar discectomy. Fault for the accident itself was admitted. Causation of the injuries and surgery was highly disputed. Plaintiff had two separate orthopaedic surgeons appear at trial via video deposition and testify that the accident was the source of plaintiff injuries. The defense hinged on the argument that, although there was no evidence that plaintiff’s symptoms pre-dated the accident, the accident was not the source of plaintiff’s problems. In support of the defense argument, a biomechanical expert testified that the forces of the impact were not sufficient to herniate a disc or aggravate a preexisting herniated disc. Plaintiff claimed past healthcare expenses in the amount of $60,000. In closing argument, plaintiff’s counsel asked for a verdict in excess of $250,000.