Patient sues estate of late spine surgeon


Powell (Wyo.) Valley Healthcare and the estate of Clinton Devin, MD, are being sued by a former patient over a 2020 surgery, the Powell Tribune reported Nov. 25.

A lawsuit filed in the U.S. District Court of Wyoming is seeking $7.5 million in damages, the report said. Sylvia Hutton alleges Dr. Devin, who died Dec. 10, 2021, in a plane crash, and PVHC were negligent in their care after receiving a spinal fusion Dec. 17, 2020.

Ms. Hutton said in the lawsuit that she had new leg pain and weakness from a hematoma at the surgical site, the report said. She alleged Dr. Devin flew to his home in Colorado after surgery, learned of the hematoma three days later, and returned to Wyoming to remove it and readjust a screw. Dr. Devin regularly flew between Colorado and Wyoming to perform surgeries.

Ms. Hutton alleged Dr. Devin "had an unreasonably high complication rate,” and caused “multiple patient injuries." She said in the lawsuit she still has pain and limited mobility in her left leg.

A spokesperson for PVHC told the Powell Tribune that the health system hasn't received the lawsuit and can't comment on specific details. The spokesperson said the health system "strongly disagree[s] with any allegation that [it] failed to properly credential any of the physicians involved in the case."

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