Westlake: Patients receive unnecessary heart stents

6:54 PM, Aug 31, 2012   |    comments
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WESTLAKE -- St. John Medical Center informed 23 patients that the stents in their hearts to keep their arteries open don't need to be there.

St. John Chief Medical Officer and Senior VP of Clinical Affairs Dr. Micheal Dobrovich says a hospital investigation revealed an unnamed private practice cardiologist allegedly placed stents into patients who didn't need them.

The procedures took place between 2009 and February of this year. Cath lab staff members alerted hospital supervisors that the doctor didn't perform the procedure like other cardiologists did. 

The patients are at a slight increase of risk of complications, the same as any other stent patient, and so far, the hospital is not aware of any adverse reactions in any of the 23.

The doctor stands by his work and the investigation continues.  Meanwhile, St. John is paying for follow-up appointments to a cardiologist of the patient's choice and will reimburse insurance companies and Medicare for the cost.

The hospital also alerted medical authorities, including the government, and revoked the doctor's hospital privileges. He never worked at the hospital, just used the facility to treat his patients.

If you haven't received notification from the hospital, chances are your case is not involved, but for those with questions, they can call (440) 827-5148 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. weekdays.


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