Medicine: Horror Story

"The drama played out here was not a fantasy contrived to satisfy a casual fancy for morbid amusement; it was real, permanent and tragic."

This was the presiding judge's description of the five-month trial that concluded last week in his Sacramento, Calif, courtroom. The plaintiff was Albert Gonzales, 32, a former grocery clerk, who charged that his doctor, Orthopedic Surgeon John Nork, 45, had performed a back operation that was not only unnecessary but has prevented successful treatment for a cancer that is slowly killing him. As a result of Nork's admission of guilt, Judge B. Abbott Goldberg awarded Gonzales a huge...

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