Lisa G. Arrowood and Cathleen Augusto Win $4.4 Million Verdict In Failure To Diagnose Breast Cancer Case


Arrowood LLP attorneys, Lisa G. Arrowood and Cathleen Augusto, won a $4.4 million verdict in the United States District Court District of Massachusetts in a medical malpractice case brought against the United States under the Federal Tort Claims Act, which involved a wrongful death claim resulting from the failure of two physicians at a federally funded health clinic to properly evaluate and refer a young woman for appropriate medical imaging and treatment in order to timely diagnose her breast cancer.

The case involved the mother of two young children who presented to two of her primary care physicians at a community health center in her hometown multiple times in 2015 and 2016 with a growing and painful palpable lump in her right breast. Though her presentation was highly suspicious of breast cancer, her primary care physicians failed to timely refer her for imaging or appropriate medical treatment with a specialist to rule out breast cancer. They also failed to communicate critical information to other physicians involved in her care and failed to follow up with her or her other treatment providers to ensure that breast cancer had been ruled out.

In 2017 when she was thirty years old, she was diagnosed with stage four metastatic breast cancer, which had already spread to her lung, spine, and bones. She received chemotherapy and radiation treatment but suffered tremendously for three and a half years and ultimately died at the age of thirty-four in August 2020, at which time she left behind her husband and two daughters, ages seven and thirteen.

The matter came before Magistrate Judge Jennifer Boal in a bench trial which took place by Zoom in March 2021. Judge Boal ultimately awarded damages to the decedent’s husband and two young daughters for loss of consortium during the lifetime of their mother and significant damages to the personal representative of the decedent’s estate for conscious pain and suffering, loss of reasonable net income, medical expenses, and post-death loss of consortium.

Read the court’s opinion here.