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Wb: Doctor Licence cancelled for Overlooking Abnormal X-ray, Radiology Opinion

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Wb: Doctor Licence cancelled for Overlooking Abnormal X-ray, Radiology Opinion

Kolkata: Holding “guilty of infamous conduct in a professional respect”, the West Bengal Medical Council (WBMC) has ordered the removal of a doctor’s name from the state medical register for a one year period.

The decision comes in response to a case filed by a deceased patient’s wife alleging medical negligence by one Dr. Tapan Kumar Dass of Sri Aurobindo Seva Kendra for botched-up the cancer diagnosis.

The woman alleged that the hospital and Dr Dass had not alerted the family about an abnormal opacity on the chest X-ray detected by a radiologist in the hospital and kept on treating the patient for reactive arthritis for almost 10 months. The doctor also allegedly missed the radiologist’s advice who had also recommended a follow-up CT scan and a fine needle biopsy.

The patient had been admitted to the hospital for fever and his discharge summary had only mentioned “reactive arthritis following acute gastroenteritis, vestibular lesion (an ear-and-balance abnormality) and lichen simplex (a skin condition).

The patient was later diagnosed with metastatic lung cancer in January 2017 during a routine medical check-up and died in November that year. Medical Dialogues team had earlier reported that the patient’s wife has also approached the National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission (NCDRC) demanding a compensation of Rs 2.3 crore.

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Read Also: NCDRC notice to Kolkata hospital on Rs 2.3 crore plea alleging botch-up cancer diagnosis

On the same matter, Telegraph reports that the West Bengal Medical Council has held the doctor guilty considering the failure of the doctor of not alerting the patient, Samiran Das or his family about the abnormal X-Ray. The Council observed that it was unlikely that a doctor who examines X-ray scans regularly would miss such shadow observed in the chest X-ray.

“…..The argument put forward by Dr Dass that he had seen the X-ray report but chose to override the observation of the radiologist since the patient was suffering from high fever, does not hold any valid ground because the patient was discharged later in a stable condition without the CT-guided fine needle biopsy…..

….So it was not that Dr Dass had missed the shadow….

Meanwhile, Dr Dass acknowledged before the council’s ethics panel and wrote, “Responsibility of delay in the final diagnosis of the (lung cancer) lies with me mainly”.

On this, the council noted, “In the backdrop of such an unambiguous written statement, his citing references to defend his action before the council can be safely construed as an afterthought to defend his lapse which led to a loss of life.”

The state medical council then held the doctor “guilty of infamous conduct in a professional respect” and decided to remove his name from the medical practitioners’ register for a year.

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Source: with inputs
23 comment(s) on Wb: Doctor Licence cancelled for Overlooking Abnormal X-ray, Radiology Opinion

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  1. I am struggling with medical board on another non detection of cancer. The doctor being an influential person has till now successfully been able to influence investigation.
    Can anyone help me with expert advise in written to submit in court ? I have pending judement in court.

  2. While I understand from the verious medical practioner\’s comments on the negligence part. And I am also aware of the pain n suffering of the family (myself having lost my husband to someform of negligence).. when we are considering punishment, I feel we need to consider – 1> was the negligence sole n absolutely only reason fr the loss of life? 2> And also what the community loses frm a senior practitioner who has treated innumerable critical cases by the dint of his same perseverance n close observation of symptoms? If we hv this system of complaint n justice how do we reward the doctors for saving so many other cases? Or is it tht we only look to punish as they r doctors ?

  3. Doctors are rewarded either way by paying for saving as well as not saving…

  4. Nowadays we hear so much about cancer awareness. If one hears of a single hint of cancer, they do all necessary investigations and remain extra-sure so that it is NOT cancer. Rest possibilities are not as fatal. How come this doctor just stood idle after this opacity was clearly reported and did not do any test for ruling out cancer? That\’s the most prudent duty of a doctor, if he holds a real degree! How was it not even mentioned in Discharge? Unfortunate patient,could have happened to any person. Clear omission of basic report! Such reluctance should be punished exemplary so that they are careful from next time.

  5. user
    R Venil Kumar May 8, 2018, 11:35 am

    This type of decision will increase the cost burden to the patients & as well as to Government Hospital. As it will be natural to all doctors to advise CT on the opinion of request of same from Radiologist.
    In this case the suspicion of tumor was raised by Radiologist and he advised for CT. He should also be taken as responsible for part of negligence for not advising CT to patient directly as a Doctor.

  6. user
    Dr Pradip Kumar Agrawal April 28, 2018, 8:37 pm

    Similar opacity can be caused by pneumonia and cancer on chest x ray with subtle differences. Sometimes clinicians over ride Radiologist s opinion and give trial of antibiotics in suspicious cases of cancer based on their experience.
    However in West with a high incidence of lung cancer such mistakes should be avoided. Even then cancellation of licence as punishment is not justified.

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