Farai Kuvirimirwa Court Reporter
A Harare woman who claimed more than US$37 000 from eye surgeon Dr Solomon Guramatunhu after accusing him of causing the death of her husband who passed on while undergoing a cataract operation in 2009 has withdrawn the case.
Mrs Gross withdrew the case filed under case number 1030/2011 after anesthetic drug level tests and postmortem results conducted at the University of Zimbabwe toxicology department and at the Forensic Chemistry Laboratory in South Africa revealed that drug levels in blood samples were within normal levels which are far from being toxic.
The tests revealed that Mr Gross’ death was a result of the atherotic heart disease he had prior to the operation. Atherotic heart disease is when an artery wall thickens as a result of invasion and accumulation of white blood cells.
Mrs Joan Gross and CAD Venturas had filed the case accusing Dr Guramatunhu of administering an anesthetic on Mr Horst Gross (70) who died while undergoing a second eye cataract surgery at Greenwood Park Eye Centre.
In a statement, Mrs Gross said she was withdrawing the matter without undue pressure being exerted on her.
“We the undersigned, CAD Venturas and Joan Gross, do hereby unequivocally and without any reservation confirm our acceptance that Dr Solomon Guramatunhu, an eye surgeon…did not cause the death of the late Horst gross on February 26 in 2009 and that he is not liable to either of us, either on the basis and in the amounts claimed.
“As a result of this we are withdrawing the claims that we have made against him and we do so freely and voluntarily without any undue pressure having been placed upon us,” read part of the statement.
The matter rose after Mr Gross decided to undergo a second eye surgery after a first one was successful. The process was to be conducted while on sedation and anesthesia was given to him by Mr Stanford Phiri who is a nurse anesthetist at Greenwood Park Eye Centre.
In the process, Mr Gross died and Dr Guramatunhu expressed his sympathy to Mrs Gross and her family. Mrs Gross proceeded to file a lawsuit against Mr Phiri and later Dr Guramatunhu.
In her claim, she demanded US$20 000 for loss of support and US$17 023 for funeral and related expenses. It is alleged that Dr Guramatunhu denied responsibility saying he was not involved in the agreement between the late Mr Gross and Mr Phiri.