What is the name of your state? Happened in Mass. live in NY.
My father went to a highly respected cancer treatment center in Boston for consideration for surgery for lung cancer. Because the tumor was initially too large, they recommended chemo/radiation and a return followup. After undergoing chemo/radiation, he returned to Boston 4/30 for followup testing including PET/CT, brain MRI, and stress test to evaluate for surgery. Met with World Famous Surgeon 5/1 and was told all looks good for surgery (he even brought up the PET/CT and reviewed the actual pics himself while we watched), but you have to have surgery on your throat before to insure proper airway, involving overnight stay, several extra trip to Boston, etc. Surgery on his throat was more extensive than quick and easy injection surgery available because he was to have a lung removed and WFS wanted him to be able to cough properly to prevent pneumonia very dangerous with only one lung. Lung surgery was to be scheduled immediately after throat surgery was complete. When I called May 24th to find out when lung surgery was scheduled, was told it was cancelled this morning because PET/CT from MAY 1ST showed several metastasis. Not only were we not informed on May 1st, or shortly thereafter, we wouldn't have been informed until next available appt with WFS. It took me a dozen ever more insistant calls to get someone to call me back to let me know what the heck was going on. Because we weren't given this information, treatment for this very aggressive cancer was not started, and now he can't start it because he has to wait 3-4 weeks for his throat to heal - total time to any sort of chemo delays 8 weeks. Very good chance he will now die since he was delayed so long. He's 69 yrs old, still works every day, and continued to work through all of his treatments so far. I spoke to a Dr. friend I went to school with, and she confirmed this was just WRONG.
Is this malpractice?
I really put my trust in this surgeon to have his facts straight, how could someone who's been doing this for decades not see the hot spots on the PET/CT (even I saw them, and would have questioned them had the Dr. not been so renown - I figured he knew what he was talking about), but even if he didn't see them, shouldn't he have contacted us or at least Dad's local Doctors when the Final PET/CT was completed later that day?
The hospital has a special pre-op center that did a very through (and expensive) workup on Dad before his throat surgery - shouldn't they have questioned why this patient was having surgery instead of getting immediate chemo?
It's possible, but not certain, the surgeon relied on a preliminary radiology report - but even the newest radiologist should have been able to note the dozen hot spots on his scan for the prelim read. Could this be complicit?
I had to tell my dad that basically he's dying and there isn't much hope (of course, we'll keep looking for newer treatments and clinical trials). Should I be sending him to a malpractice attorney? If so in which state should we look, and should it be someone in or away from Boston?
RondaWhat is the name of your state?