August 10, 2012|By Karla Bowsher, Sun-Sentinel

Less than three days after doctors treated him for chest pain at Delray Medical Center, a 40-year-old father died of a heart attack, a lawsuit states.

Lazaro Rodriguez’s wife attempted CPR and called 911, but it was too late by the time emergency medical responders arrived. He was pronounced dead upon arrival at the hospital.

According to a medical malpractice lawsuit filed by Rodriguez’s widow in Palm Beach County Circuit Court Thursday, doctors misread test results and improperly treated him after he showed up at the Delray Medical Center ER around 8:30 p.m. on Jan. 12, 2011.

After the ER doctor diagnosed Rodriguez with a heart attack, two specialists were assigned to his case: radiologist Fernando Rivera and cardiologist Rodolfo Carrillo-Jimenez, who also goes by Rodolfo Carrillo. Rodriguez did not have his own cardiologist and did not know the specialists who treated him at the hospital.

The lawsuit blames Dr. Rivera for misreading the results of a coronary CTA, a type of X-ray that can identify heart problems such as blocked arteries that could lead to a heart attack. Dr. Rivera reported a “normal coronary CTA” when the result was actually abnormal, the lawsuit states.

Dr. Carrillo-Jimenez is blamed for stopping Rodriguez’s cardiac medications and prematurely releasing him from the hospital. The lawsuit states he sent Rodriguez home on Jan. 13 with only aspirin and ibuprofen despite the patient’s elevated levels of troponin, a protein that indicates heart trauma such as a heart attack.

Rodriguez went into cardiac arrest while at home around 3:30 a.m. on Jan. 15.

Joanne Rodriguez, who is seeking damages of at least $ 50,000, could not be reached for comment.

Her lawyer, Nancy La Vista, said her client has been “devastated” by the loss of her husband and is in the process of moving back to Chicago, where she has family. The couple’s sons were 10 and 11 when Rodriguez died.

The Delray Medical Center and Dr. Carrillo-Jimenez are cited in another pending wrongful death lawsuit filed in January 2011.

Brian Yellin, of Delray Beach, sued the hospital and several doctors who treated his wife, Susan Yellin, after she showed up at the ER on March 24, 2010, for several abdominal pain, heart palpitations and other symptoms.

Four days later, the patient was found unconscious in her hospital bed, according to the 33-page lawsuit. She had suffered two heart attacks that deprived her brain of oxygen.

Brian Yellin’s lawsuit blames Dr. Carrillo-Jimenez for mismanaging his wife’s blood-thinner medications, which she took because of a prior heart valve surgery.

Carrilo-Jimenez and Rivera, who have offices in multiple southern Palm Beach County cities, could not be reached for comment despite calls to their offices and homes.

A spokesperson with the Delray Medical Center also could not be reached for comment despite a call., 561-243-6607 or Twitter @SSCourts