Expert Article Library
Doctor's Opinion Not Enough for Causation of Liver Damage by Drug
Case Name: Ruggiero v. Warner Lambert Company (Click here for the full text of the case)
Court: United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
Date: September 16, 2005
Expert: Medical Expert. Dr. Douglas T. Dietrich.
Issues: Is the testimony of a doctor regarding the causation of liver failure of plaintiff admissible?
Summary of case: Brought on behalf of her husbands estate, Plaintiff claims that the drug Rezulin, a drug for diabetes, caused the cirrhosis of liver and his subsequent death.
Role of the expert: Dr. Dietrich stated that Rezulin was the probable cause of the Plaintiffs liver failure and death. Dietrichs testimony was differential diagnosis a method of eliminating possibilities in order to come to a diagnosis.
Challenges to the Expert's testimony: Defendant objected to the testimony because the expert failed to demonstrate that Rezulin was the cause of Plaintiffs death. The court excluded the testimony and granted summary judgment for defendant because there was no independent study or other independent evidence to support the experts testimony.
Summary prepared by Christopher P. Stafford, Student, Golden Gate University, School of Law