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Surgeon Amputated the Wrong Leg of the Patient Face Charges, Fined

A female Austrian surgeon faces prosecution and a fine after she reportedly amputated the wrong leg of a patient.

An 82-year-old patient went to the surgeon’s clinic and was told that his leg needed to be amputated, according to the report. The surgeon had done an inadequate job of reviewing the patient’s medical records to determine which leg should be amputated and had tagged the right leg wrongly before removing it above the knee.

Surgeon Amputated Wrong Leg
Image Source: WION

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The man had “many medical issues,” according to the hospital, and had had his left leg amputated due to a previous illness. The patient’s right leg was severed instead of the left, and the 43-year-old surgeon learned about it two days after the operation.

Later, the patient’s correct leg was amputated as well. The patient died before the complaint against the surgeon could be heard in court.

The surgeon was found guilty of “gross negligence” and fined 2,700 Euros after an investigation (P154,000). In addition, the court ordered him to pay 5,000 Euros to the patient’s orphaned family (P285,000).

During the case hearing, the surgeon explained that there was a problem with the chain of command in such an operation, which resulted in a mistake. The surgeon simply stated, “I just don’t know,” when asked why the right leg was indicated for amputation.

The surgeon chose to take time off after the incident in May, at her request. She has since transferred to a new clinic. The mix-up, the hospital stated in May, was caused by “human error” and a “disastrous confluence of circumstances.”

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