Illinois cardiologist, practice cleared from patient death allegations

Mark Bovard, an Illinois Court of Appeals judge, has upheld a trial verdict clearing cardiologist Amit Dande, MD, and Springfield, Ill.-based Prairie Cardiovascular Consultants of any wrongdoing in the 2015 death of a patient. 

Plaintiff Cheryl Wilson alleged that her husband, Leslie Wilson, died because Dr. Dande was negligent in assessing his heart condition and recognizing its severity, according to Feb. 20 court documents. 

The jury in the case found that Dr. Dande was not negligent and followed the normal standard of care for a patient with stable ischemia. 

On appeal, Ms. Wilson alleged that it was unfair for the trial court to allow a defendant's medical expert to testify about possible causes of the patient's death. 

There was debate among medical experts during the trial because no one knew the actual cause of death, since no autopsy was performed on Mr. Wilson. 

Ms. Wilson also alleged the trial court omitted her claim that Dr. Dande failed to tell her husband to restrict physical activity while awaiting a heart catheterization procedure.

Dr. Dande first met with Mr. Wilson in July 2015 and recommended an elective cardiac catheterization scheduled for Aug. 11. On Aug. 3, Mr. Wilson died while mowing his family farm. 

Ms. Wilson sued the defendants, claiming her husband's death was due to negligence. She claimed Dr. Dande and the practice deviated from the standard of care in failing to appreciate the seriousness of the patient's cardiac condition, failed to timely and adequately perform appropriate diagnostic tests to assess and treat his condition, and failed to provide adequate instructions regarding restricting his physical activities. 

"The jury could have reasonably concluded that the plaintiff failed to demonstrate within a reasonable degree of medical certainty that the defendants deviated from the applicable standard of care and/or that the deviation more likely than not was a proximate cause of Les Wilson's death. After reviewing the record, we conclude that the jury's verdict was not against the manifest weight of the evidence," Mr. Bovard wrote in his decision to uphold the not guilty verdict. 

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