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SKETCHES OF COURT: Verdict favors college in suit by physical therapy student

November 13, 2015 By Alba Acevedo Special to the Brooklyn Daily Eagle
Court sketch by Alba Acevedo
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In this courtroom sketch, Hon. Gloria Dabiri listens as attorney Michael S. Korson (standing), of the law firm Isaacson, Schiowitz, Korson & Soln, conducts a direct examination of the plaintiff’s neurologist in the unified trial Friedland v. Touro College.

The plaintiff, a 36-year-old woman pursuing a master’s and doctorate program in physical therapy, was attending a class session conducted by a guest lecturer at the college in January 2006. In a demonstration of neural tension, the lecturer asked the students to stand and perform a series of movements that involved a maximal stretch from the fingertips through the neck.

Friedland, who has a history of fibromyalgia and other additional diseases, alleged that as a result of the exercise, she developed symptoms including sharp pain, facial drooping and slurred speech. While she testified that she had been medically cleared for pursuing her studies, she is claiming that she suffered nerve damage as a result of improper teaching.

The defendant’s position, represented by Donna Marie Baloy (at right), of the law firm Wilson, Elser, Moskowitz, Edelman, maintained through expert testimony that the plaintiff’s pain pattern was not possible from an anatomical basis as being attributable to negligence or breach of duty on the part of the lecturer in an interactive class.

The jury deliberated briefly before returning a verdict for the defendant, finding no negligence in the trial that concluded last week in Kings County Civil Supreme. 

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