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| Shapiro, Appleton & Washburn

A truck driver from New Jersey recently filed a medical malpractice lawsuit after months of trying to ignore a serious problem. The issue, according to court papers, was that the man had dealt with an erection that had lasted for nearly eight months.

You read that right; according to court documents a urologist in Delaware performed a botched penile implant on Daniel Metzgar in 2009. Metzgar’s attorney says that while the matter may appear silly, it was no laughing matter for his injured client. For months Metzgar’s problems impacted the way he lived his life. Even simple things like getting up and walking to get the morning paper, attending family functions or going out to dinner became awkward if not impossible.

The source of his problem was the defective implant, which consisted of three inflatable cylinders, a fluid reservoir and a pump. According to the urologist’s attorneys, Metzgar should have come to the doctor sooner so that something could have been done to fix the problem early on. The urologist, Dr. Thomas Desperito, claims that had he known sooner he might have been able to do more to remedy the problem.

The doctor’s attorneys are blaming Metzgar, saying that he should have known there was something terribly wrong because after surgery he admitted that his scrotum had swollen to the size of a volleyball. However, Metzgar says he did not report the problem because his doctor had told him that swelling, sometimes even serious swelling, was normal.

The urologist claims that when Metzgar arrived for a checkup four months after surgery he warned him that the implant should be removed due to an infection, but that Metzgar chose to ignore this warning for another four months. However, Metzgar claims he lost his health insurance after he had the initial procedure and had no way to pay the urologist the $10,000 he demanded upfront before he would perform the removal surgery.

The device was only removed after the tubing punctured Metzgar’s scrotum during a family vacation to Niagara Falls. Metzgar has since had another doctor install a second implant, a device that is necessary due to his severe erectile dysfunction. Though the new implant works well, Metzgar says the scar tissue from the first surgery has left him deformed and with diminished sensation. Metzgar and his wife are now suing for unspecified damages from the urologist and his medical group.


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