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  1. #1
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    Dr. Boachie Named in Lawsuit

    I had heard that Dr. Boachie retired. Today, someone told me he closed his practice in NY and returned to Ghana and then forwarded me this article. My heart goes out to this poor girl.

    http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/...icle-1.2029689
    Last edited by mariaf; 07-14-2015 at 03:06 PM.
    mariaf305@yahoo.com
    Mom to David, age 17, braced June 2000 to March 2004
    Vertebral Body Stapling 3/10/04 for 40 degree curve (currently mid 20's)

    https://www.facebook.com/groups/ScoliosisTethering/

    http://pediatricspinefoundation.org/

  2. #2
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    There was a post about it back in December.

    http://www.scoliosis.org/forum/showt...boachi+lawsuit

    As far as I gathered his retirement just happens to coincide with the lawsuit.
    30 something y.o.

    2003 - T45, L???
    2005 - T50, L31
    bunch of measurements between...

    2011 - T60, L32
    2013 - T68, L?

    Posterior Fusion Sept 2014 -- T3 - L3
    Post - op curve ~35



  3. #3
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    I guess it's possible that anything can be a coincidence. I had not heard of any plans for him to retire, nor had the person who told me about the lawsuit (which could mean nothing). In any event, very sad for this girl.
    Last edited by mariaf; 07-14-2015 at 03:06 PM.
    mariaf305@yahoo.com
    Mom to David, age 17, braced June 2000 to March 2004
    Vertebral Body Stapling 3/10/04 for 40 degree curve (currently mid 20's)

    https://www.facebook.com/groups/ScoliosisTethering/

    http://pediatricspinefoundation.org/

  4. #4
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    I had known that Dr. Boachie was going to retire for at least a year before it actually got announced.

    I'm fairly certain that every one of your surgeons has been sued, probably multiple times. The vast majority of suits have no basis. When something goes wrong and a patient has a complication or a bad outcome, everyone suffers, including the surgeons and the anesthesiologists. Most of these problems are not caused by neglect. These medical professionals can do everything in their power to protect their patients from experiencing complications, but stuff still happens. When a professional is negligent, they're at fault. If they don't take the appropriate steps to minimize the possibility of something going wrong, that's negligent. If they operate while under the influence, that's definitely negligent. Otherwise, I think we need to understand that we're just one of the unlucky ones.

    How many times have you heard of surgeons telling patients that there are no guarantees? In case someone forgot, THERE ARE NO GUARANTEES. And, yes, I believe that when this patient was consented, she was probably not told that she might lose some of her sight or that she might end up in a wheelchair. It would literally take hours for our surgeons to tell us absolutely everything that might happen to us during and after surgery. And, even then, we might have a complication no one else has ever experienced. I'm not sure of this, but I believe that the risk of death is actually higher than the risk of blindness (though both are rare). The patient was almost certainly told that there was a risk of death, and yet she decided to proceed with surgery. If she had been told that there was a risk of blindness, would she have changed her mind? We are all told that these are very serious surgeries with very serious complications. Have any of you ever changed your mind about surgery because of what you were told in the consent process? Look at the list of complications at the end of this post. I'd be interested to hear from people who would specifically not have surgery because of something on the list.

    A few studies of interest:
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25946720
    Despite being well-informed in an optimized informed consent process, patients cannot recall most surgical risks discussed and recall declines over time. Significant progress remains to improve informed consent retention.
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22504517
    A total of 306 patients aged 63 years (range, 50-83), with 83% women. Mean follow-up was 54 months. Mean Cumulative Illness Rating Scale score was 5 (range, 0-26). Main curve was 50 (range, 4-96) with apex between T12 and L2. Ten percent of patients had anterior surgery only, 18% had double anteroposterior approach, and 72% had posterior surgery only. Seventy-four percent (226 patients) had long fusions of 3 or more levels and 44% (134 patients) were fused to the sacrum. Forty percent (122 patients) had a decompression performed and 18% had an osteotomy. There were 175 complications for 119 patients (39%). No cases of death or blindness were reported.
    Here's a list of complications put together by the International Spine Study Group:
    Infection
    Major
    o Deep
    o Pneumonia
    o Sepsis
    Minor
    o Superficial
    o UTI
    o C Diff infection

    Implant
    Major
    o Hook dislodgement
    o Interbody fracture
    o Interbody migration
    o Rod fracture
    o Rod dislodgement
    o Screw fracture
    Minor
    o Painful implants
    o Prominence
    o Screw malposition
    o Interbody subsidence
    o Crosslink dislodgement
    o Set screw dislodgement
    o Screw bone interface loosening

    Radiographic
    Major
    o DJK
     Not requiring surgery
     Requiring surgery
    o PJK
     Not requiring surgery
     Requiring surgery
    o Pseudoarthrosis
    Minor
    o Coronal imbalance
    o Curve decompensation
    o Heterotopic ossification
    o Sagittal imbalance
    o Adjacent segment degeneration

    Neurologic
    Major
    o Visual deficit/blindness
    o Brachial plexus injury
    o CVA/Stroke
    o Spinal cord injury with incomplete deficit
    o Spinal cord injury with complete deficit
    o Nerve root injury with weakness
    o Retrograde ejaculation
    o Bowel/Bladder deficit
    Minor
    o Neuropathy or sensory deficit
    o Pain (radiculopathy)
    o Peripheral nerve palsy
    o Delirium

    Mortality
    All major

    Cardiopulmonary
    Major
    o Cardiac arrest
    o Pulmonary embolism
    o Respiratory arrest
    o DVT
    o Congestive heart failure
    o Myocardial infarction
    o Reintubation
    o Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome
    Minor
    o Coagulopathy
    o Arrhythmia
    o Pleural effusion
    o Hypotension
    o Congestive heart failure

    Vascular
    Major
    o Vascular injury
    Minor
    o coagulopathy
    o Thrombophlebitis

    Gastrointestinal
    Major
    o Obstruction
    o Perforation
    o Bleed requiring surgery
    o Pancreatitis requiring surgery
    o Cholecystitis requiring surgery
    o Liver Failure
    o SMA Syndrome
    Minor
    o Ileus
    o Bleed not requiring surgical intervention
    o Pancreatitis not requiring surgery
    o Cholecystitis requiring surgery

    Renal
    Major
    o Acute Renal failure requiring dialysis
    Minor
    o Acute Renal failure requiring medical intervention

    Operative
    Major
    o Retained sponge/instrument
    o Wrong surgical level
    o Unintended extension of fusion
    o Vascular injury
    o Visceral injury
    o EBL >4L
    Minor
    o Dural tear
    o Fixation failure (hook/screw)
    o Implant failure
    o Pedicle fracture
    o Posterior element fracture
    o Vertebral body fracture

    Wound Problems
    Major
    o Dehiscence requiring surgery
    o Hematoma/seroma with neurological deficit
    o Hematoma/seroma, no neurological deficit requiring surgery
    o Incisional hernia
    Minor
    o Hematoma/seroma not requiring surgery
    o Hernia
    Never argue with an idiot. They always drag you down to their level, and then they beat you with experience. --Dilbert
    I'm sarcastic... what's your super power? --Unknown
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Surgery 2/10/93 A/P fusion T4-L3
    Surgery 1/20/11 A/P fusion L2-sacrum w/pelvic fixation
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
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  5. #5
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    I agree there are risks to any surgery. I had to sign a consent form for my son's surgery - and even though it was several years ago, that's not something you forget. And yes, surgeons are sued all the time, but in this case someone was left wheelchair bound and blind, so that's not the same thing as simply being sued. I'm NOT saying for sure Boachie was at fault - that's for a court and/or a jury to decide. Maybe the damage to this girl could have been prevented - maybe not. I'm sure there are many times when things go wrong in the OR that nobody could have prevented. There are also surely some instances where a surgeon (or someone else in the OR) IS at fault. They do sometimes make mistakes. As a mother, and one with a daughter close to this girl's age, my heart simply goes out to her, that's all. If we would give the surgeon the benefit of the doubt, why not the patient? Now, that may not be everyone's view and that's fine - it's just my personal feeling and I respect the rights of others to feel differently.
    Last edited by mariaf; 07-14-2015 at 03:08 PM.
    mariaf305@yahoo.com
    Mom to David, age 17, braced June 2000 to March 2004
    Vertebral Body Stapling 3/10/04 for 40 degree curve (currently mid 20's)

    https://www.facebook.com/groups/ScoliosisTethering/

    http://pediatricspinefoundation.org/

  6. #6
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    Agreed that we have no idea if any error was made.

    Even if an error was made, I have a problem with people going public with this sort of thing. Can you imagine if something similar happened to you every time you made a mistake? It's devastating enough for something to go wrong, but when someone goes public with it, I can't even imagine how that would feel. Again, I think it might be entirely different if the surgeon or anesthesiologist were intentionally negligent.
    Never argue with an idiot. They always drag you down to their level, and then they beat you with experience. --Dilbert
    I'm sarcastic... what's your super power? --Unknown
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Surgery 2/10/93 A/P fusion T4-L3
    Surgery 1/20/11 A/P fusion L2-sacrum w/pelvic fixation
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    If you've signed up and are having trouble posting, please check your spam folder. An email was sent to the email address which you subscribed. You have to follow the instructions in that email. Done that and still having trouble posting? Contact Joe O'Brien at jpobrien@scoliosis.org.

  7. #7
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    Mar 2008
    Location
    Chicago-"land"
    Posts
    157

    Boachi lawsuit

    [QUOTE=LindaRacine;163630]I had known that Dr. Boachie was going to retire for at least a year before it actually got announced.

    How many times have you heard of surgeons telling patients that there are no guarantees? In case someone forgot, THERE ARE NO GUARANTEES.

    /QUOTE

    Unfortunately I have to agree with Linda on this one. Although I feel terrible for this young girl; the first thing my surgeon said to me "THERE IS NO GUARANTEE". My surgeon will do the best he can but when you are facing a surgery that has almost a 20% chance of death - you have to choose.

    Life in a wheelchair or the chance to walk?

    EVERYTHING possible is listed on the consent you sign; up to and including death. The surgeon admitted he could nick my spinal cord. THIS IS WHY YOU DO YOUR HOMEWORK, INTERVIEW MANY SURGEONS, THEN SPEND TIME USING YOUR BRAIN GOD GAVE YOU, AND PRAY!

    Pray you found the right one - that feeling in your gut. I chose my first surgeon - Dr. Pashman. Then my daughter's BOSS called me and convinced me Dr. Kropf would be better. What to do? Gut said Pashman - I should have gone with him. He even said "how many times do you want to face surgery"?

    I did NOT follow my gut on my first surgery - instead I was helping my daughter. No more daughter tending - from now own I do the best for me medically after I pray and consider what God tells me. That's it.

    You can sue and try to attempt to get some money. I'd rather "store my treasure in heaven" and do my best to live and help others. This young lady is able to do what she likes.

    Susan
    Susan
    XLIF/Posterior Surgery 6/16/08. Fused T10-L5 in CA by Dr. Michael Kropf (don't go there unless it's simple, I hear he's at Cedar's now). Very deformed, had revision w/5 PSO's, rods from T-3 to sacrum including iliac screws, all posterior, 5/23/16 with Dr. Purnendu Gupta of Chicago.


    Owner of Chachi the Chihuahua, So Cal born and bred, now a resident of 'Chicagoland' Illinois. Uh, dislike it here....thank God there was ONE excellent spine surgeon in this area.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chihuahua Mama View Post
    My surgeon will do the best he can but when you are facing a surgery that has almost a 20% chance of death - you have to choose.
    I've never seen a number anywhere near that high. I think that all the published numbers are between .5% and 1%.
    Never argue with an idiot. They always drag you down to their level, and then they beat you with experience. --Dilbert
    I'm sarcastic... what's your super power? --Unknown
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Surgery 2/10/93 A/P fusion T4-L3
    Surgery 1/20/11 A/P fusion L2-sacrum w/pelvic fixation
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    If you've signed up and are having trouble posting, please check your spam folder. An email was sent to the email address which you subscribed. You have to follow the instructions in that email. Done that and still having trouble posting? Contact Joe O'Brien at jpobrien@scoliosis.org.

  9. #9
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    http://www.aaos.org/AAOSNow/2009/Oct...ging7/?ssopc=1

    is "Ischemic optic neuropathy" the technical name? What is the cause of the vision loss?

  10. #10
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    Dec 2008
    Location
    illinois
    Posts
    766
    Gal, I think there is a way to check the infection rate at any hospital you choose. I know it came up on the internet when I was checking one of the major Chicago hospitals.
    T10-pelvis fusion 12/08
    Fractured t-9 six days out of surgery
    C5,6,7 fusion 9/10
    PJK at t-9
    T2--T10 fusion 2/11
    Removal of left side t6-t10. 8/14
    C 4-5 fusion 11/14
    Right scapulectomy 6/15
    Right pectoralis major muscle transfer to scapula
    To replace the action of Serratus Anterior muscle 3/16

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Posts
    27
    A surgeon who is doing his job by dotting his "i's and crossing his "t's has a surgeon coordinator who meets with you once surgery is scheduled. The doctor himself may not go over even single possible complication, Paperwork is hardly their job.however you do have the right to that list well in advance of your surgery. My surgeon provided the list with a request for signature that I was aware of them. The list also has a disclaimer that there may be unknown risks included as well. I was aware of all the risks and proceeded with surgery. The reason this girl is able to file suit is that she was not informed of one particular risk. This is all so unfortunate. Very sad story for all.

  12. #12
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    Oct 2009
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    PA
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    Confused on several counts

    1) I've had numerous operations in my lifetime, only one intrinsically more serious than any general anesthesia is (minimally invasive neurosurgery on my cervical spine). ALL of them required me to sign lengthy consent forms essentially stating I would not hold the surgeon responsible even if my head falls off (and a similar slew of outcomes as long as the one Linda posted).

    What I as a patient want to know are the PROBABILITIES.

    2) Secondly, how come this lawsuit is mentioned but not the one I'll link below? It DID hit the New York Times and so far as I know, all "reputable" news media. (Still not clear just what happened PPW

    I have a strong prejudice in favor of transparency about medical outcomes even though as with all news, most readers don't understand enough statistics to digest the actual meaning of big splashes presented - least of all in "medical breakthroughs." It's hard enough to find studies to give patients a notion of the risks they run - read "impossible" - based on physicians' track records, one's personal cohort (age and difficulty of surgery) and relative quality of facilities.

    With that bias built-in to our ability to get information (why? Mostly because of the protective cabal against disclosing negative megative information to the public), I can't understand why any patient would want to cast a further pall on disclosing malpractice suits - including, of course, especially if negligence was proven.

    Just consider the detailed listings of possible side-effects for any and all medications! No one would take any med without knowing what the frequency of occurrence of any of them were. Some of them are listed even if the negative event is not known for sure to be related to the medicine itself, their inclusion being for the sake of liability protection. There is such a thing as lying by excess of information! Consider the online consents we all sign without even scrolling, for countless contracts accepted by a mere "click". The government has also mastered this art, of concealing important facts by burying them in haystacks of unimportant ones.

    Without odds, no one can make a cost:benefit analysis about anything, and "informed consent" is impossible.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2015/05/30/ny...gery.html?_r=0

    http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/...icle-1.2240814
    Not all diagnosed (still having tests and consults) but so far:
    Ehler-Danlos (hyper-mobility) syndrome, 69 - somehow,
    main curve L Cobb 60, compensating T curve ~ 30
    Flat back, marked lumbar kyphosis (grade?) Spondilolisthesis - everyone gives this a different grade too. Cervical stenosis op'd 3-07, minimally invasive

  13. #13
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    Oregon
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    I was quoted my risk of blindness as 1 in 600,000 or something like that. You just have to hope the guy before you wasn't number 599,999.
    Gayle, age 50
    Oct 2010 fusion T8-sacrum w/ pelvic fixation
    Feb 2012 lumbar revision for broken rods @ L2-3-4
    Sept 2015 major lumbar A/P revision for broken rods @ L5-S1


    mom of Leah, 15 y/o, Diagnosed '08 with 26* T JIS (age 6)
    2010 VBS Dr Luhmann Shriners St Louis
    2017 curves stable/skeletely mature

    also mom of Torrey, 12 y/o son, 16* T, stable

  14. #14
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    It's a very grey area. Most complications have odds ratios published. Believe it or not, the disclosure of more information about complications doesn't seem to affect informed choice. I think it's human nature for a large percentage of the population to believe that they won't have a serious complication.

    I'm sure it happens, but I don't recall ever hearing about anyone changing their mind about deformity surgery because of the informed consent process.

    --Linda
    Never argue with an idiot. They always drag you down to their level, and then they beat you with experience. --Dilbert
    I'm sarcastic... what's your super power? --Unknown
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Surgery 2/10/93 A/P fusion T4-L3
    Surgery 1/20/11 A/P fusion L2-sacrum w/pelvic fixation
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    If you've signed up and are having trouble posting, please check your spam folder. An email was sent to the email address which you subscribed. You have to follow the instructions in that email. Done that and still having trouble posting? Contact Joe O'Brien at jpobrien@scoliosis.org.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by leahdragonfly View Post
    I was quoted my risk of blindness as 1 in 600,000 or something like that. You just have to hope the guy before you wasn't number 599,999.
    Gayle: I remember a patient who had cystic fibrosis, both (edit made: typing error said "patients" ) parents were carriers. The parents were told that there was a 1:4 chance that a future child would have CF. So......they had 3 more kids, 2 of whom had CF. I remember the mom saying, "I thought that if we had 3 more kids, that since they said we already had one with CF that the next 3 would be OK".

    When I had my spinal cord injury from a screw that was impinging on my spinal cord, I had been a paraplegic for 2 weeks. I remember Dr. Hiratzka saying that I had a "10-15% chance of being a permanent paraplegic". I would have agreed to a higher risk, since my legs had barely moved for 2 weeks and Dr. Hiratzka offered the only hopeful intervention in 2 weeks. My situation was different than almost everyone on the forum since it was an Emergency surgery and not an elective surgery.

    Susan with 4 rods
    Last edited by susancook; 08-28-2016 at 03:12 AM.
    Adult Onset Degenerative Scoliosis @65, 25* T & 36* L w/ 11.2 cm coronal balance; T kyphosis 90*; Severe disc degen T & L stenosis

    2013: T3- S1 Fusion w/ ALIF L4-S1/XLIF L2-4, PSF T4-S1 in 2 surgeries
    2014: Hernia @ ALIF repaired; Emergency screw removal surgery for Spinal Cord Injury at T4,5 sec to PJK
    2015: Revision Broken Bil T & L rods and no fusion: 2 revision surgeries; hardware P. Acnes infection
    2016: Ant/Lat Lumbar diskectomy w/ 4 cages + BMP + harvested bone + prayer

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