Wednesday, 31 May 2017

Rogue breast cancer surgeon Ian Paterson faces jail

Rogue breast cancer surgeon Ian Paterson faces prison when he is sentenced later for wounding patients by carrying out unnecessary operations.
Paterson, 59, was convicted last month after his trial heard he carried out mastectomies on patients after inventing or exaggerating their risk of cancer.

The surgeon, described by police and his victims as having a "God complex", performed many of the operations at private hospitals, using the money he made to fund his lucrative lifestyle.

Patricia Welch and Frances Perks both underwent unnecessary mastectomies after being led by Paterson to believe it was the safest option to prevent cancer developing and spreading.

Both were later recalled to the private hospitals in the West Midlands where their operations had been carried out and told by different specialists that none of their surgery was needed.

They believe no sentence will be long enough for the trauma they have suffered.

"I would just like him to not ever come out of prison. What he's done to us and everyone else, he doesn't deserve to come out," Frances told Sky News.

"We can't walk away from the scars, so why should he?"
Patricia agrees: "He takes away a part of what's being a woman and then you've got to get your head around it and you'll never get over it because you'll see it every morning in the mirror".

The Paterson case raises serious questions about how rogue surgeons can be identified and dealt with. Concerns were first raised about his work at the Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust in 2003 yet despite a series of complaints and investigations he was not suspended by the trust until 2011.

Among the concerns raised by his colleagues were the "cleavage sparing" mastectomies he carried out on patients known to have cancer. The operations involved some breast tissue being left for cosmetic reasons but led to an increased risk of cancer returning.

The NHS has already paid out almost £18m settling claims from more than 250 patients.

Lawyers believe there could be as many as 1,000 victims.

Linda Millband, national lead lawyer for clinical negligence at Thompsons Solicitors, believes concerns about Paterson's NHS work were not properly shared with or acted on by private hospitals where he saw patients.

"At the present time their argument is that they are contractors rather than employees and therefore they don't have to take responsibility for erroneous and negligent surgery that takes place within their hospitals," she told Sky News.

SKY   News.