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Hysterectomy & MD's Attitude

I, for one, don't ever want to hear a doctor snivel about the cost of malpractice again! The reason the rates are so high has nothing to do with attorneys....

I, too, can be counted in the ranks of women who have had a hysterectomy and would give anything if I could turn back the clock. It's not the hot flashes, it's not the normal healing process, and it's not dry hair. It's the arrogant, self-serving attitude of a doctor I have known (and trusted) for over 20 years.

Did this doctor have my best interest in mind? I doubt his interest went beyond securing payment.

Who ever heard of a doctor performing major surgery and then leaving the country for a 10-day vacation without providing backup for his surgery patients?

Who ever heard of a board-certified surgeon telling a patient he didn't know what a hematoma is, but suggesting it would go away in a few weeks?

Who ever heard of a gyn/surgeon allowing a hospital to put a hysterectomy patient in a room with a man when no emergency situation warranted such an affront on a woman's dignity at such a time?

When I filed a formal complaint regarding the lousy care I received at the hospital (this MD has been on its Board for at least 20 years that I know of), including a broken bed, safety rails with screws removed, no bath towels, non-existent nursing notes etc, this doctor had a case of bad memory. Perhaps he should have read his own notes before he put his signature to a sworn declaration. I guess the other 237 patients who participated in a survey of patient care done by The California Health Care Foundation were all wrong, too, in their assesment of the care they received in the surgical ward of that facility.

I think it is time for women to insist that the state agencies who are charged with the obligation and responsibility to ensure patients are properly cared for start doing their job and quit making excuses for healthcare providers. I also think the time has come for legislation to REQUIRE that all healthcare providers obtain certification from the patient AFTER the anticipated recovery time that the service they provided was completed in a satisfactory manner, with competance, and that there is no dispute between the patient and the doctor regarding negligence, malpractice, etc. If such certification were required prior to the insurance company issuing a check, then I would anticipate the rate of negligence and malpractice would be substantially reduced. After all, no one pays a mechanic until after the service is performed, why should patients treat doctors any different?

I, for one, don't ever want to hear a doctor snivel about the cost of malpractice again! The reason the rates are so high has nothing to do with attorneys. The fact is there is a hell of a lot of negligence and malpractice out there, and I would be surprised if 5% of it is ever recorded on pleading paper.

Since doctors seem to have forgotten that whole concept of medical ethics, then perhaps the rest of us should treat medical care just like they do—as a business arrangement. Because of the negligence of my surgeon, I'd be willing to give any attorney 80% of any settlement, and I would do 90% of the discovery gathering myself. Attorneys should give doctors no pass on these negligent issues, and neither should juries.

Georgia <Uremovic2@cs.com>
Madera, CA

For more information about hysterectomy:

  • HERS Foundation (Hysterectomy Educational Resources & Services) is an independent, nonprofit women's health education organization providing accurate information about hysterectomy, its adverse effects and alternative treatments.
  • Hysterectomy Awareness, a website dedicated to raising awareness about hysterectomy as well as providing support and resources about the subject.
  • Sans Uteri, a forum for the discussion of the physical and emotional challenges that can be caused by hysterectomy.
  • Hystersisters, a woman to woman support website for hysterectomy recovery. This group offers resources and kindness so that visitors can discover options and make decisions for themselves.
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Updated  05/15/2010