Troshina v. Zhuravelva, et. Al.- Failure to diagnose breast cancer

Suits and Deals

Troshina v. Zhuravelva, et. al. – $1M for Medical Malpractice

By Charles Toutant of New Jersey Law Journal

Troshina v. Zhuravelva: A Hudson County jury assessed $1 million in damages on Dec. 16 against an obstetrician gynecologist for failing to respond to a patient’s abnormal mammogram. But the verdict was molded to $100,000 based on the jury’s findings that breast cancer was a pre-existing condition.

Marina Troshina met with physician Karina Zhuravelva of Cliffside Park in February 2006 after receiving a radiologist’s report that her mammogram came back abnormal. The two conversed in Russian, Troshina’s native language. She claimed Zhuravelva told her not to worry about the report and that the calcifications identified were a normal sign of aging, says her lawyer, John Vlasac Jr. of Vlasac & Cassidy.

Zhuravelva disputed that account but said she had no recollection of the appointment, says Vlasac.

More than a year later, Troshina developed a lump in her left breast and was diagnosed with a cancerous tumor. She underwent a radical mastectomy, chemotherapy and dissection of an arm-pit node. She was lat declared cancer-free but there was a 482-day delay in treatment due to Zhuravelva’s negligence, according to the suit.

Judge Hector Velazquez presided at the week-long trial. The jury concluded the cancer was a pre-existing condition and attributed 75 percent of proximate cause for the injuries to that factor. Then, the jury attributed 60 percent of fault to Troshina for not seeking a second opinion, bringing the verdict to $100,000.

Zhuravelva was represented by Robert Evers of Marshall, Dennehey, Warner, Coleman & Goggin in Roseland, who did not return a call.