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572,000 € due to wrong cancer diagnosis

Orthopaedic surgery

The Higher First Instance Court of Thessaloniki, with its 16591/2015 decision, awarded to a 71 years old lady the amount of € 572,000 as compensation and imposed to the defendants a € 28,000 contribution to legal costs. The Court also assigned as directly enforceable the amount of € 250,000.
As described, the defendants are the three doctors as well as a clinic and a test laboratory.
According to the description of the medical aspect of the case, it all started after the screening-colonoscopy and duodenoscopy -incurred by the applicant in June 2013. In the context of examinations, biopsy was taken by the doctor who recommended regular inspection and monitoring. The biopsy was sent to defendant private diagnostic Center, where they were examined by two pathologists. A few days later the lady was informed of the results, and as a consequence she contacted the defendant doctor-surgeon in order to know the condition of her health.
The patient reported to the surgeon that she had no symptoms and he, after consulting the pathological analysis performed by the two doctors-defendants, he proceeded on finger rectal examination of the patient, noting-as he informed her-that she suffered from adenoma in the size of a walnut and that the situation was urgent.
According to the court decision, the defendant doctor claimed that she should have been operated "yesterday" and made all the necessary arrangements and admitted the elderly in the defendant clinic, where he retains an office in order to undergo surgery immediately, with the diagnosis of "malignant tumor of rectum '.
The next day of the admission, the woman entered the operating room, where she was subjected to Sigmoid Colectomy, while after the surgery she remained in the clinic for two weeks undergoing treatment.
When, a few days later, the complainant was informed about the results of the histological examination, she began to doubt that she suffered from cancer and so she requested and obtained the material and handed it to another diagnostic Center.

As mentioned in the legal decision, based on the examination of the same material that followed, it was proved without doubt that the applicant has not suffered from malignant neoplasm of rectum. In the same decision, "proved that due to that surgery, it was caused to the applicant, except from the mutilation of the intestine and the anus, she has undergone a permanent irreversible colostomy, and hernia has been created in the region, as a complication of the surgery, which can be treated surgically, however, it is complex and there is a risk of opening new outlet elsewhere".
The decision of the Higher First Instance Court of Thessaloniki describes that "because of the surgery, the applicant has become disabled, as the natural organic intestinal function was abolished and created an abdominal anus, which is permanent and irreversible." The permanent disability has affected every facet of life the applicant and has significantly reduced her quality of life.
The applicant-always according to the decision-following the surgery proved that she could not participate in any social event, but is bogged down in the house of her daughter in America, where she was forced to move, so the latter could take care of her.
The histopathological examination was proved as incorrect, without which the elderly would not have ever undergone surgery. Moreover, as it regards the surgeon-doctor, it was noted, inter alia, that he relied merely on the clinical examination of the patient in conjunction with the results of Pathology examination and failed to seek the execution of other examinations, such as MRI pelvis and endoscopic ultrasound of the rectum and colon.

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