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Widow of Man Given Artificial Heart Sues Supplier, Hospital

October 18, 2002|From Associated Press

PHILADELPHIA — The widow of a man who died after almost 10 months with an artificial heart has filed suit against the maker of the device and the hospital where it was implanted, saying her husband wasn't adequately informed of the ordeal he would have to endure.

James Quinn, who died Aug. 26 after a stroke, came to regret taking part in the trial of the self-contained heart and had talked about suing several months before his death, said his attorney, Alan Milstein.

Milstein said Quinn, 52, told him, "No human being should have to go through what I'm going through."

Rather than physical pain, Milstein said, "I think he was referring more to just the act of being an experimental subject, the prodding and the probing and the feeling that you were just an object."

But the suit, which seeks damages in excess of $100,000, also says shortly before his death Quinn could barely breathe "and was in constant, unbearable pain."

A Hahnemann University Hospital spokeswoman had no comment on the lawsuit.

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