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Kentucky surgeon regains license, patients worried about care

Patients have a right to be seen by competent, helpful medical teams and professionals. They'd be well within their rights to be angry if a medical provider got to keep a license after making a series of mistakes or ethical violations.

Unfortunately, doctors are human, and they do make mistakes. Sometimes, those mistakes are enough to cost them their licenses. Sometimes, they're only suspended. For example, look at a case of a surgeon who is back to work after having lost his license. 

The surgeon's license

The surgeon was caught with numerous drugs in his system while he was performing surgeries on patients in May 2018. As a result, his license was restricted, and he was no longer able to practice medicine at the Clark Regional Medical Center.

When interviewing staff members, such as the nurses working in the operating room that day, there were reports that the doctor had been acting oddly, stumbling, mumbling and talking in an unusual way. A drug screening showed that he had Xanax and oxycodone in his system, along with some other drugs of the same category. Unfortunately for the medical provider, he could not produce current prescriptions for these medications.

Settling the case

In this instance, the licensure board and the surgeon agreed to try to settle the case instead of taking it to court. He was told he would need to be without drugs for 90 days to get his license back. Former patients were shocked when he regained his license and was able to return to work.

One patient reportedly had surgery a few weeks before the surgeon's license was restricted. Today, he's dealing with a bone that is not in place and an ankle that is not healing. When he went to the surgeon's office to say the ankle wasn't healing right, they simply told him that it was healing correctly.

Another patient has similar complaints. She had ankle surgery, and an orthopedist has confirmed that there is damage causing her leg to become cold and purple, a common sign of poor circulation.

Cases like this are shocking for good reason. Patients deserve better than to find out that their medical providers were not in their right minds when performing potentially dangerous surgeries. If malpractice takes place, patients do have a right to seek compensation and to launch their own medical malpractice cases against those who harmed them with their negligent acts.

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