5 cases of postop infection tied to Boston surgeon

  1. Hey Y'all

    Ran across another interesting article in the Boston Globe. Five staph infections possibly (three quite certainly) connected to a surgeons colonized staph. One death, surgeon loses privileges and closes his practice, some background information. Apparently, there are 500,000 post op wound infections in the US every year and "tens of thousands of deaths".

    The link: http://www.boston.com/yourlife/healt...th_underscores

    Wow. We deal with this stuff in detail and up-close-and-personal but when you hear the national statistics its amazing.

    Yer ol' Papaw says: 'there's NO SUCH thing as "ELECTIVE" surgery.'

    Papaw John
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    Joined: Aug '05; Posts: 488; Likes: 181


  3. by   GingerSue
    sounds like an interesting article, but when I tried the link above - it says "sorry, page not available"

    anywhere else to read about this?
  4. by   papawjohn
    Hey Gingersue

    Darn 'links'!!! Don't know why I have so much trouble with 'em.....

    Sorry about this but the article is in the archives of the Boston Globe. You can reach that thru 'boston.com'---free registration required. Then I had to search the Boston Globe archive. I found it quickly using the 'search' for "death underscores". But, dagnabbit, there's a fee for reading it in the archives.

    Probably it's worthwhile if you need documentation for a paper or something. But as a general-interest, surfing the threads kind of read---way too much trouble.

    I apologize.

    Papaw John
  5. by   GingerSue
    thanks anyway - I can try google with the words - sometimes that works okay
  6. by   steelcityrn
    I have had several post cabg sternum infections requiring a wound vac from one certain hospital near me specializing in cardiology. This is quite frightening in that the one patient was in good health, so he thought with 5 clogged arteries. With no other co-morbities to have such decline from a staph infection is amazing. In 3 weeks this man went from 215 pounds to 158. We should all be worried about this.
  7. by   GingerSue
    this is what I found

    could the doctor have known that he carried staph?
    why would he refuse the antibiotic treatments himself?

    what about the other doctor mentioned in the article who left mid-operation to go to the bank?

    that is a lot of infections every year.
  8. by   papawjohn
    Hey GingerSue!!

    WOW!! Great job finding that link!! I sorta thought from the way the article read, that he had several previous wound infections and that the Hospital Infection Control was aware of them. (GOOD GOING!!!) But that no concrete match between what Staph they could culture from him, that cultured from infected Pts, and what they could culture from Pt compared to other Pts. Must have been a really confused mess.

    Finally, seems like they made the match with the woman who died. What a horrible situation!! And that the Hospital required him to take a sequence of 3different Abx regimes, which he thought excessive, so he left/was fired at the first hospital---but continued Surgery at a 2nd hospital until THEY found out about the 1st Hospital and they fired him too. (GOOD FOR THEM!!!)

    So he left his practice in Boston. (Maybe he's independently wealthy and neurosurgery was an interesting hobby??)

    For me however, the real news was the statistics on post-op infections in the US over-all. AMAZED!!! FIVE HUNDRED THOUSAND post-op infections?

    Horrible. Wonder how to think about this. Do other nation's have superior control of this problem--so we could learn from them? Are there areas of the country, or particular surgical specialties, or kinds of hospitals---anyone out there???---that shows the way to change that statistic? Where would someone look for the answers to the questions?

    I'm amazed and energized to learn more, just don't know how.

    PS to SteelcityRN--One of the Pts I had in my first year of being an RN was a young (40's) guy who'd been a Gen'l Surgeon, had strong family cardiac hx, recognized angina in himself. Went to Houston to a world famous cardiac surgery hospital for his CABG. Developed post-op staph. Ended up with infection so bad they had to remove his sternum. I was astonished--pulled down his gown to put steth on his chest--there was nothing but scar tissue there. You could SEE his heart beating like a bird rythmically flopping about in a sack.
    He must have seen my shock on my face. "Yeah", he says, "I try to not let people get mad at me." Of course he was profoundly handicapped---was on permanent disability. And he was one of the most ANGRY ANGRY ANGRY people I've ever met. And I don't blame him.

    Papaw John
    (who has a day off coming up, and will be googling it)
    Last edit by papawjohn on Nov 12, '05
  9. by   unc005
    Hey y'all!

    Thanks for this 'enlightening' (and interesting) topic/thread. It's VERYYYY scary!! Sheesh! That statistic is...WOAH! ! Anyway, I had done some searching earlier today after jumping on here and running across this thread and found the EXACT same site y'all had mentioned and was gonna post it, but GingerSue, ya beat me to it!! LOL--. Anyway, you asked about the other surgeon--the one who left to go to the bank during mid-operation--wellllllll...I did a search out of curiosity because I was primarily curious if he was an NS (neurosurgeon) or orthopod (and my interest primarily is because I have had A LOT of PERSONAL experience with NSs, being a neurosurgical Pt.) and here's a link to a story I found about him and so forth (VERY, VERY interesting, I MUST say...HMMM! <this is supposed to be more of a 'pondering' face>).


    "So he left his practice in Boston. (Maybe he's independently wealthy and neurosurgery was an interesting hobby??)"--Hey, Pawpaw John...LOL!ROFLMAO! Sorry I found the neurosurgery comment HILARIOUS...OK, shower time...hope y'all are having a good/decent weekend!



    P.S. Pawpaw John, or anyone, to the questions you asked--if you find answers to your questions (or if anyones finds answers to your questions) would you (or anyone else) post them, please? I'm REALLY interested! Thanks! I'll be checking back/try to check back...
  10. by   hipab4hands
    I wonder if they are making the Surgeons wear "ask me if I washed my hands" buttons like some of the hospitals make the nurses wear.
  11. by   unc005
    Ummm...good question...I wonder/would wonder too! <ponders> <SIGH> Not at the hospital where I had my neurosurgeries in the spring they don't...not my neurosurgeon (don't think they do...)...hmmm...<SIGHs again>. And this is a MAJOR medical center (teaching hospital)--I live in NC. However...<whistles>.

  12. by   papawjohn
    Hey Y'all

    Gosh!!! I never thought there'd be this sort of interest in the article and the topic of post-op, hospital caused infection. (Maybe--on this web site, the head nurse's boy friend?--but I shouldn't say that, it's too much like being at work....)

    Oh well---I was playing around with google and "infection post op" and a few other key words and ran across this magazine "infection control times"--now doesn't THAT sound like great leisure reading??

    The ICT.org and a few other sites, all seemed to say that there're two things that were recent developments: That the good news is that modern, 'scopic surgeries and early discharges home were protective of Pt's in regards to post-op infections. And that's a good thing. But inpatients are at increased risk of nosocomial infections--despite antibiotics. And that NOT a good thing.

    There is a use of Antibiotics that has turned up just in the last few months at my place of work. Are you-all seeing it too? That ABx are only given 24hrs post op unless the surgeon specifies a reason they should be continued (reasons on the order sheet like--indwelling drain).

    Very big topic, like I said. I spent an hour or so, felt I had only scratched the surface. Will keep playing with google and e-medicine. Will post here if I find anything that seems of general interest as long as there's posting going on here.

    Papaw John
  13. by   papawjohn
    Hey Y'all

    trying to erase an overly political entry

    P- J-
    Last edit by papawjohn on Nov 13, '05
  14. by   papawjohn
    Hey Y'all

    trying to erase an overly political entry.

    Last edit by papawjohn on Nov 13, '05