Standard of care.....I need help understanding something. I was recently told that my surgeon's standard of care was acceptable and in-line with the majority of the profession.
I was advised that I needed a microciscectomy and it was done. During the surgery, a ronjour broke and the broken piece was left in the disc space. The doctor guaranteed it would not migrate and said it was 4mm x 2mm. The piece is really about 9mm and it has moved to the rear edge of the disc (from initially being almost centered).
I am much more worse off than before the surgery. Every doctor I've seen since makes comments about him leaving the piece in. I am in the VA system now, so almost each visit is a new doctor! Nurses and techs see the problem right away and can't believe it. No one can believe that the hospital or doctor did not preserve the instrument (they threw it away immediately).
I have looked at the MAUDE data and found very few cases where the doctor left a fragment in the disc. With my limited capability and resources, I found little support for this being common. What was common was the retrieval of the foreign object.
This is not just a griping thing. If I got a bad doctor, I can understand that. With that, I should be able to get fixed by someone else. I'm having trouble finding someone willing. This thing just goes in circles! I really am trying to understand all this.
So...What exactly is acceptable standard of care? Knowingly providing incorrect information to a patient? Knowingly by-passing the military system (or any other insurance protocols) to rush the scheduling of another surgery? Making a decision and taking a risk, but not owning up when it doesn't play out perfectly?
Any advice is appreciated. Thanks.