Lavern Wilkinson Loses Fight to Cancer

The C word is something nobody wants to hear. Lavern Wilkinson wished she had been informed earlier. It might have saved her life.

Lavern Wilkinson, 41, walked into Kings County Hospital on Feb. 2, 2010 complaining of chest pains, where she was given an EKG and a chest X-ray.The results showed a two-centimeter nodule in her right lung, which she was never told, but was instead advised to take Motrin for pain by first-year resident Dr. James Willis.

Wilkinson would return to Kings County Hospital numerous times thereafter, including in the Spring of 2012, where she would hear the news that would change her life forever.

After complaining of chest pains and wheezing, Wilkinson was given another chest X-ray. The results showed the nodule that was in her lung two years ago had doubled in size and metastasized to her left lung, liver, spine and brain. She was now diagnosed with Stage 4 lung cancer.

With six months to live, Wilkinson couldn’t help to think about her 15-year-old autistic and mentally retarded daughter, Micalia. “She is going to be left without a mother. What is going to happen to my little girl?” she told NYDailyNews.

Wilkinson filed a lawsuit against the city, “seeking monetary damages for pain and suffering and severe injuries ‘as a result of the carelessness, recklessness, negligence and medical malpractice’ at Kings County Hospital.” She accepted a $625,000 settlement. Attorneys predicted Wilkinson could have received as much as $10 million had not for New York’s statue of limitations.

Wilkinson died of cancer Thursday at 2:50 a.m. at Long Island College Hospital, health officials said.


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