Chattanooga Couple Sues Compounding Firm Over Death Of 5-Year-Old Son, Reese Martin

Monday, October 7, 2013
Reese Martin
Reese Martin

A Chattanooga couple has sued a New England compounding firm over the death of their five-year-old son, Reese Martin.

Barry and Reginnia Martin filed the suit in Federal Court in Knoxville against Ameridose, LLC, Medical Sales Management, Medical Sales Management SW, GDC Properties Management, Barry Cadden, Gregory Conigliaro, Lisa Conigliaro Cadden, Douglas Conigliaro, Carla Conigliaro and Glenn Chin.

The suit says beginning in July 2012, Reese Martin received electrolyte and methocarbamol products made by New England Compounding Pharmacy (NECP). Ameridose owns NECP and the individual defendants are involved in its management.  

The complaint says the child died as a result - in whole or in part - from the effects of the compound administered while he was a patient at Children's Hospital at Erlanger.

It says on Sept. 26, 2012, "in the wake of dozens of cases of fungal meningitis associated with NECC’s products, state agents raided NECC’s lab on Waverly Street in Framingham, Massachusetts. NECC’s few remaining employees were scrubbing the compounding areas with bleach. Despite this last-ditch effort, the “clean” rooms were filthy. A leaky boiler stood in a pool of stagnant, dirty water. The autoclaves used to sterilize the product were discolored, tarnished, and contained visible moisture. The air intake came from vents located about 100 feet from a mattress recycling facility that released copious amounts of dust and other contaminants into the air. The air vents in the “clean” rooms were covered with dirt and white fuzz. The metal shelf in the “clean” room used to prepare methylprednisolone acetate, as well as other products, was covered in a reddish-brown, cloudy substance.

"Investigators determined that NECC’s internal records showed dozens of instances of bacterial and fungal contamination within the NECC facility over at least the past nine months. NECC ignored these test results. NECC never even attempted to get rid of these microbial contaminants.
48. Eighty-three out of three hundred twenty-one observed vials from one of three recalled lots of MPA contained a greenish-black substance visible to the human eye. Seventeen other vials contained a white filamentous material. All fifty out of fifty vials tested confirmed the presence of live microbes (whether fungal or bacterial). The CDC and FDA later confirmed the presence of fungus in unopened vials of NECC’s methylprednisolone acetate. This is the same fungus that the CDC confirmed was present in at least forty fungal meningitis cases. The recall was then expanded. On October 6, 2012, New England Compounding Pharmacy, Inc. d/b/a New England Compounding Center (NECC) announced a recall of all products currently in circulation that were compounded at and distributed from its facility in Framingham, Massachusetts."

The couple said they did not learn until Oct. 6, 2012, "that their son’s death may be linked to the products sold by NECC."

The suit was filed by attorney Christopher Gilreath.



Blood Assurance Seeks Blood During Holiday Season

During this holiday season, Blood Assurance is asking the community to consider scheduling an appointment to donate blood. Whole blood donations have a shelf life of 42 days, meaning the blood must be used during this time frame; therefore, blood donors are continuously needed to maintain a substantial supply to local hospitals serviced by Blood Assurance. Once an individual makes ... (click for more)

Voices Of Lee Visits Morning Pointe Of Hixson

The Voices of Lee visited the residents at Morning Pointe of Hixson, bringing with them bright smiles, beautiful songs and the season's greetings from their hearts. The choir from Lee University in Cleveland is known for its famous appearances, including the 2012 Presidential Inauguration and nationally broadcasted singing competitions. The Voices of Lee recently performed ... (click for more)

Curtis Coleman Sentenced To 144 Months For Dealing Heroin

Curtis Allen Coleman, 41, of Dayton, Ohio, was sentenced to serve 144 months in prison by Federal Judge Travis R. McDonough for heroin distribution in Chattanooga. Coleman pleaded guilty in August to a federal indictment charging him with, among other things, conspiracy to distribute heroin.  According to information on file with the United States District ... (click for more)

Red Cross Continues Tornado Relief In Southeast Tennessee

After tornadoes and strong straight-line winds moved through Southeast Tennessee on Tuesday evening, Red Cross mobilized more than 70 volunteers, provided shelter for displaced residents, and is working to ensure that emergency needs are being met for everyone who was affected.   “We are working very closely with our local Emergency Management Agencies and community partners ... (click for more)

Tennessee River Gorge Trust Trail Warriors Make You Want To Take A Hike

Trail warriors of the Tennessee River Gorge Trust make you want to take a hike.  The Tennessee River Gorge Trust staff and volunteers make a huge difference in the Chattanooga community and have been making the outdoor areas around the River Gorge clean and protected for more than 30 years.  They deserve to be recognized and praised for all of the hard work they have ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Bible In Gatlinburg

The day after fire rained and reigned in Gatlinburg, Isaac McCord, 24 and from Tullahoma, was picking up debris at the popular Dollywood attraction. The theme park had minimal damage compared to the hundreds of structure either lost or severely damaged in Sevier County. He picked up a piece of paper that was in a puddle of water, beneath a bench. “It was one of the most surreal ... (click for more)