Appellate Division, Fourth Department
Foreign Object — Statute of Limitations
Jacobs v. The University of Rochester, et al.
Appealed from Supreme Court, Herkimer County
Background: The plaintiff commenced a medical malpractice action seeking damages for injuries sustained as a result of a spinal fusion surgery performed in 1989. The plaintiff alleged a “Wisconsin wire” was implanted in the plaintiff’s body. However, after many years, the wire began to protrude from his spine into the muscle and soft tissue around the surgical site. The court granted the defendant’s motion to dismiss as the complaint was time barred.
Ruling: The Appellate Division affirmed. The plaintiff had argued that because the wire was not properly bent, twisted or placed when it was implanted, it became a foreign object within the meaning of CPLR 214-a. However, the court held that an intentionally implanted device such as the Wisconsin Wire is not a foreign object.
William R. Pratt III for the plaintiff-appellant; Ann M. Campbell of Brown & Tarantino for the defendants-respondents