When patients are told that they need surgery, they should have the right to know the background of the surgeon who is performing the operation. Especially important to the patient is whether the surgeon has a history of making surgical errors. Knowing this information gives the patient the power to enter into the surgical procedure with confidence in their doctor’s skills.
This was not the case with at least one former patient of a New York City doctor. The doctor is the subject of four lawsuits, filed in another state, claiming medical malpractice. The patient says that she was never told that the doctor had legal issues regarding her medical license, even though the patient spoke with the doctor, who was a practicing neurosurgeon at the time, and the hospital, before the surgery.
The surgery, which was conducted on the left side of the patient’s back, has affected problems with her right foot, making those problems worse than before. Hospital officials admit that they knew of the doctor’s legal troubles before hiring her. In fact, the doctor in question practiced in another state, and that state’s regulators found that 17 out of 3,000 surgeries performed by the doctor were questionable.
The doctor confessed to making surgical errors in four surgical procedures, and according to another neurosurgeon in that state, one patient may have died as a result of a mistake made by the doctor.
While all surgeries carry a certain degree of risk, patients should be informed if the doctor performing the surgery has a questionable background. When surgical mistakes occur, patients have the option of filing a medical malpractice lawsuit to pursue compensation for damages.
Source: Rockford Register Star, “Doctor sued in Rockford had trouble in Colorado too,” Melissa Westphal, Dec. 18, 2012