Tom Valet has settled a case involving a 10 year old boy whose testicles were lost after they ascended into his abdomen and his pediatricians failed to diagnose the condition. The boy was born with a congenital condition known as undescended testes, in which the testicles fail to descend into the scrotum after birth. In this case, the testicles were retractile, meaning they moved into and out of the boy's scrotum.
The boy's physicians were aware of his condition and followed him for the first eight years of his life, monitoring the position of his testicles to ensure that they did not ascend back into his abdomen. Testicles cannot survive for extended periods of time in the abdomen because they require a cooler environment to remain viable. However, at age eight his pediatrician decided that no further follow-up was required and advised his mother that the testicles would fall when he reached puberty. He did not schedule any further follow-up appointment to check on the position of the testicles.
Unfortunately, the boy's testicles did not fall, they ascended back into his abdomen. Because of the pediatrician's decision not to schedule any further follow-up, he was not seen again for more than two years, by which time the testicles had been in the abdomen for an extended period of time. Multiple surgeries were performed in an attempt to salvage the testicles, but they failed.
Today, the boy is infertile, produces no testosterone, cannot father any children and must take hormone replacement injections for the remainder of his life. He has undergone surgery to implant prosthetic (artificial) testicles. Just prior to trial we were able to reach a settlement with the defense for a substantial amount of money. Because of the sensitive nature of the case and the injuries involved, the name of the boy and the terms of the settlement must remain confidential.