Unnecessary Heart Stent Implantation
The experienced personal injury attorneys at the Law Offices of Peter Angelos are now representing clients involving unnecessary heart stent implantation.
In December 2009, St. Joseph Medical Center, in Towson, Maryland began to send letters to hundreds of patients after revealing that the former head of the cardiac catheterization department, Dr. Mark G. Midei, implanted coronary stents in patients with blockages that were not severe enough to justify this risky life-changing procedure.
During an on-going federal investigation of St. Joseph Medical Center, the unnecessary stent surgeries were discovered. The hospital has now confessed that serious errors were made. Dr. Midei was removed from his position at the hospital; three executives also left their positions abruptly in June 2008 while the federal investigation was in full swing.
By January 21, 2010, St. Joseph Medical Center had sent letters to 369 patients admitting that a subsequent clinical review of the original catheterization report which was made at the time the patients' stents were implanted revealed differences that may be important to ongoing care and treatment. Patients may have had coronary stents implanted unnecessarily. Since the extent of these inaccurate reports is as yet unknown, the number of patients affected could rise.
Implanting a heart stent, which opens arteries that are blocked, can cost upwards of $10,000. Clinical guidelines say that the blockage must be at least 70%; many of the patients receiving the unnecessary stents were told they did, indeed, have blockages of 70% or higher. However, upon closer review of their records, many of the patients who had cardiac catheterizations at St. Joseph Medical Center had blockages well under 70%; some had blockages as low as 10%.
Any surgical procedure is stressful and even terrifying for some patients, but to put a patient through an unnecessary surgery is very serious and should be investigated to provide redress to those harmed and to prevent future harm to patients who put their trust in hospitals to provide appropriate medical care and treatment.
If you or a loved one received a letter from St. Joseph Medical Center regarding stents you had implanted during a cardiac catheterization, please contact the Law Offices of Peter G. Angelos. You may be entitled to financial compensation for any injury, pain and suffering this unnecessary procedure has caused.