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Santa Ana doctor removed kidney, not spleen, and keeps license

California's Medical Board has ruled that a Santa Ana urologist will no longer be allowed to neither see patients nor perform operations on them without being under the immediate supervision by another physician. He is also forbidden from performing any nephrectomies, the medical term assigned to a surgical procedure to remove either one of both of an individual's kidneys, as well.

This ruling was decided on by the state's medical board back in late May this year after it was brought to their attention that the physician had removed a patient's spleen as opposed to their kidney. The attorney for the physician reportedly told the licensing panel that the doctor made the mistake while performing a complex procedure.

He also noted the many factors contributed to the medical error occurring, but declined to elaborate any further as to what those circumstances were.

The doctor's attorney presented a petition to the panel while attempting to make a case as to why the physician shouldn't require supervision. Over 60 physicians signed that petition in support of the doctor retaining his medical license. Among those supporters, one said that the physician was both generous, kind and well-loved among all those he worked with.

Prior to the state's medical board imposing the supervision conditions on his license, the hospital he worked for had already put constraints on him itself. When the doctor initially removed the patient's spleen at Fountain Valley Regional Hospital in 2015, they immediately revoked his ability to do neprectomies with them unless he was being aided by a co-surgeon.

As for the restrictions that have been placed on the doctor and his ability to practice medicine independently, they are understood to be temporary. The judge presiding over the case has emphasized that the conditions are necessary because the doctor is currently unable to safely practice medicine. The restrictions on the doctor's license are intended to protect patients at any facility where the physician enjoys full privileges.

Misdiagnoses, doctor or surgical errors and unclean medical care facilities account for hundreds of thousands of cases of diminished patient health or deaths each year. If you know someone that has received inadequate medical treatment, then they might be entitled to seek damages in their case. A San Bernardino medical malpractice attorney can help with your legal matter.

Source: The Orange County Register, "Santa Ana doctor barred from certain surgeries after removing spleen instead of kidney," Courtney Perkes, accessed June 21, 2017

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