Class-action suit against chiropractors led by Alberta woman rejected

Published: 2010-01-19 16:24:29
Author: CP | Jaruary 16, 2010

EDMONTON A judge has ruled a lawsuit against a chiropractor and the agency that regulates them doesn't meet the criteria needed to be certified as a class-action suit.

The attempt was led by Sandra Nette, who alleges that adjustments to her upper neck ruptured arteries, which in turn disrupted blood flow to her brain and caused several paralyzing strokes. The suit sought to include other Albertans who suffered injuries after undergoing manipulation of the upper cervical spine since June 12, 1998.

Justice Paul Belzil ruled that the suit fails to meet any of the criteria necessary for a class-action.

He said the definition of who could be involved is vague and that it would be extremely costly and complicated to try to hear a number of very individual cases together.

He also expressed concerns about whether Nette and her husband could represent others who have been injured.

"While I accept, without hesitation, that the plaintiffs are well-intentioned, I am concerned that the catastrophic injuries sustained by Sandra Nette and the impact of these injuries on her husband, David Nette, make it inappropriate for them to be representative plaintiffs."

In her statement of claim, Nette alleges she went for treatment at chiropractor Gregory Stiles' office and had her neck manipulated.

She claims that after the session she felt dizzy as she was driving home and pulled over to call her husband for help. As he was carrying her into a hospital's emergency bay, she collapsed and went into convulsions, suffering permanent neurological damages.

The claim alleges that Nette's life has been devastatingly damaged as a result of the chiropractor's manipulation of the vertebrae in her upper neck.

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