Gaston v. Parsons

864 P.2d 1319 (1994)


P was a partial quadriplegic with a functioning left arm. P sought medical treatment from Ds for muscle spasms in his lower body. Before the surgery, D informed P about certain risks to the procedure, but not of any risk of possible loss of function in P's arm. Ds performed the procedure on March 12, 1987. P immediately noticed that his left arm was numb and did not function. D assured P that the loss of function in his left arm was temporary and that use of his arm would return in six months to two years. P did not recover. P filed this action on November 14, 1990, alleging negligence for failing to obtain P's informed consent before the surgery and in performing the surgery. Ds moved for summary judgment under the statute of limitations. The statute requires actions for claims arising from medical treatment to be 'commenced within two years from the date when the injury is first discovered or in the exercise of reasonable care should have been discovered. The trial court granted the motion and entered judgment for Ds. The Court of Appeals reversed, holding that the informed consent claim was barred, but that the negligent surgery claim was not barred because the statute of limitations did not start to run on that claim until P knew or should have known of Ds' negligence.