Clark v. Nenna arose out of a surgical procedure that the defendant performed on the plaintiff. The plaintiff alleged emotional distress caused by the defendant’s professional negligence, i.e., failure to remove surgical washers from the plaintiff’s leg. The plaintiff did not allege that the defendant’s conduct was intentional or willful. The nature of the plaintiff’s harm did not present a particular likelihood of genuine and serious mental distress. Therefore, the plaintiff was required to support his claim for emotional distress damages with medical or expert proof. He did not do so. The trial court granted the defendant’s motion for summary judgment, finding the plaintiff failed to make a legally sufficient showing of damages. The Appellate Division affirmed, holding that the plaintiff failed to establish compensable damages.