December 06, 2006

Docs Phoning It In

Phone "Prescribing antibiotics has become so common that many doctors literally are just phoning it in ... Researchers found that 40% of people who filled an antibiotic prescription had not seen a doctor in at least a month."

Flashing liability alarms are just the tip of the iceberg, no? But we can kind of see where docs are coming from; our mom pushed antibiotics like smarties. Read [USA Today]

October 30, 2006

Real Chinese Guinea Pigs

Images_7 Back in college, we had friends hard up for cash who donated plasma until the veins went dry or slept in tanks while listening to East German fitness tapes in the name of "research." So it caught our eye when we learned that some patients in China are getting suckered into unnecssary heart and lung transplants so docs can get hands-on-training. There must be some $$ involved.  Too bad one of the suckers just died. Read [Epoch Times]

October 26, 2006

Sketchy Ethics 101

Cueto Circuit Judge Lloyd Cueto is running for office. So, he slaps together some flyers at Kinko's. (Karl Rove will tell ya' that ya' need photos with those slogans. ) So he plops in a shot of his old pal Joseph Schallert, M.D. Sounds like good ol' democracy in action. But noooooooooooo. It's dirty. Dr. Schallert happens to be facing a malpractice lawsuit in Cueto's court. Nice that Doc had time to ham it up for the camera in between getting squeezed on the stand.   Read [Madison Record]

Anyone want to share some other legal shenanigans? EMAIL US

October 23, 2006

Dirty Campaign $$$

Money Hot Damn: Texas-sized trial lawyer kicks Dem. Gov. hopeful $2.5 million. Is that legal? Is he insane? This is wrong for all kinds of reasons. The GOP-incumbent called  Counselor O'Quinn a "trial lawyer sugar daddy." Read [KWTX-TV]

This got TMMS to thinking about dirty, er, legal and clean dollars flowing into elections all-time.

Batting lead off, a consortium of docs and hospitals making campaign donations to the tune of: 
65% of the booty is going to the GOP with getting med mal caps at the top of the wish list.

Batting cleanup, a well-schooled crew of lawyers, donating an abusurd amount:  $89,041,046
Dems get 69%

Other Big Individual Hitters:
The Assn. of Trial Lawyers: $26,599,956.
American Medical Assn: $23,139,274
American Hospital Assn: $12,978,544

This is nuts. A system must be screwed up if docs and lawyers will donate so much cash to preserve, or change, the way liability issues are handled.

For more election season money fun, go here.

Anyone think publicly financed elections would help? Chime in.

October 05, 2006

Med Expert Gone Bad

We've been getting some tasty med mal-related email of late. One note came in from the crew at

Drum roll, please: It's the 54th annual—alright maybe the first—“Bad Science Investigation” (BSI) Awards. The best junk science from the nation's finest "expert" witnesses.

Harron200 The BSI for Best “Film Editing” goes to: Dr. Ray Harron

That's right. Dr. Harron of West Virginia was hired by personal injury lawyers to read x-rays for their asbestos lawsuits – and then he was hired to read the same x-rays for silica lawsuits. In a result that was surprising to the scientific community and a federal judge, Dr. Harron improbably diagnosed the same people as being sick from both conditions! Dr. Harron may not be able to accept his award, however. After U.S. District Judge Janis Jack questioned his diagnoses of thousands of patients as having two diseases, he sought a lawyer for himself and abruptly closed his medical practice that was dedicated exclusively to reading x-rays.

Read up on the Dr. X-Ray, here.

Have some expert witness tales of your own? EMAIL US.

More awards next week.

October 02, 2006

'Don't Worry, We Do Thousands of These"

Choikent Last week, we put the word out that we wanted to HEAR YOUR STORIES about WHAT MAKES YOU SICK.

Well, we have heard from you. Here is a sad installment from Dennis Kruse who told us what happened to his son while under the care of Dr. Choi.

Dr. Choi: "I had some problems with Marshall's intubation and he went without oxygen for at least 15 minutes."

Kent Choi, MD, was the doctor on duty in the ICU in  June of 2005 after our son, Marshall Kruse, had surgery. Approximately 18 hours after Marshall’s surgery while in the recovery unit at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics, Mr. Choi suggested to us that, as a precautionary measure, perhaps our son should be intubated.

We discussed this with our son as well as Dr. Choi, whose  exact words to us were "DON’T WORRY WE DO THOUSANDS OF THESE".  We were then asked to leave while Kent Choi Md. performed the intubation.

Forty minutes later..... while standing in the hall at the ICU reception desk with some family friends,  Kent Choi Md casually approached us and said "I had some problems with Marshall's intubation and he went without oxygen for at least 15 minutes."

As this news sank in to all of us, I asked him if he had killed my son's brain. He simply shrugged his shoulders and said "don’t know." He then turned around and walked off leaving us standing in the hallway. We then demanded  to see our son and  were told we couldn’t, as they were cleaning him up. A short time later when we finally got in to see Marshall; he was grimacing and fighting for his life, as he sank into a coma. 

Do you have a story to tell? EMAIL US

Continue reading "'Don't Worry, We Do Thousands of These"" »

September 21, 2006

This Makes Us Sick!

The whole idea behind ThisMakesMeSick is exposing the outrageous problems of America's medical liability nightmare.

We've been evenhanded over the past year going after the dirtbags causing the mess, no matter if they are lawyers, doctors, patients, politicos, or insurance companies.

Recently, we heard a truly sick tale from Blaine Stanziana about his wife's horriffic hospital stay:

My wife went into Pittsburgh's Mercy hospital on 10-3-05 for a hysterectomy. The morning of the surgery we told hospital doctors that my wife still had a sore throat. They ignored us. My wife then placed this information in the preoperative anesthetic evaluation form where question 6 asked " Have you had any of these symptoms in the past week? A Sore Throat? A cough or cold? My wife then checked the yes box's for both answers.

My wife  developed the Flesh Eating Disease called Necrotizing Fasciitious in her surgery incision six hours after  surgery. My wife then underwent five emergency surgeries in three days to save her life. She was on a breathing machine fighting for her life. In all she had seven surgeries in eight days all because the hospital did not listen to us about her having a sore throat the morning of the surgery.

Here is a photo taken by Blaine of his wife after the incident.



If you have a tale, let's hear it! EMAIL US


Continue reading "This Makes Us Sick!" »

September 06, 2006

9/11 Responders Waiting For Answers

Nyfd Pres. Bush's 9/11 health efforts:

"Five years after the World Trade Center towers collapsed in a vortex of dust and ash, government officials have only recently begun to take a role in the care of many of the 40,000 responders and recovery workers who were made sick by toxic materials at ground zero."

Dr. John Howard was appointed by the Bush administration in February to coordinate the federal government’s 9/11 health efforts and admits that costly delays and missed opportunities may have shattered responders’ trust in the government. “I can’t blame them for thinking, ‘Where were you when we needed you?’" Right.

“They seem to be running from the people who are sick, not standing with them and helping them,” said Representative Carolyn B. Maloney, a Democrat who represents parts of Manhattan and Queens.

Read [Amherst Times]

What's going on here? Anyone versed on the subject?

August 29, 2006

Dr. Responsibility

Respon_4 Gastric-Bypass Doc Flees Iowa for NY, Leaving Six Dead Patients Behind
"In charges made public ... the Iowa Board of Medical Examiners accused him of "a substantial lack of knowledge or ability" and of "engaging in practice harmful or detrimental to the public." The charges could lead to a fine or suspension of his Iowa medical license."

And, what else? Read [Des Moines Register]

August 23, 2006

Bush, Frustrated Docs, and a Crusader

Storybushthursday Pres. Bush Takes a Break From The Middle East: "These trial lawyers need to back off."  Read [Washington Post]

Retired Doc Volunteering At Clinic: Priceless. Getting Malpractice Insurance: $10,000. Read [Insurance Journal]

Woman Whose Husband Died During Sinus Surgery Helps Others Navigate Med-Mal Legal World Read [OC Register]

A Californian Asks: "Do any medical malpractice attorneys advance costs, or split them with the client? Also, why are so many experts needed?"
For the answer, click here [The Daily Breeze]

About TMMS

  • ThisMakesMeSick answers renowned medical inventor Dr. Robert Fischell's wish to spread awareness (and outrage!) about the medical liability crisis that's ruining our healthcare system.

    Learn more...

What makes you sick?

  • We want to hear your thoughts and personal stories.

    Have you...

    • Fretted over rising malpractice premiums?

    • Signed a truly unbelievable medical liability waiver?

    • Faced a frivolous lawsuit?

    • Dealt with a doctor or a hospital who wouldn't take responsiblity for their actions?

    • Practiced defensive medicine?

    Let us know about groups and individuals offering real solutions. And be sure to add your comments to our posts.

    Contact the editor of ThisMakesMeSick.

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You don't say...

  • "This election destroyed a popular Karl Rove myth. The truth is that trial attorneys are winning, attacks on trial attorneys are backfiring and opponents of the civil justice system are losing."

    The CEO of the Association of Trial Lawyers of America said.

  • "We have discovered that virtually all patients are willing to sign a contract in which they agree not to sue their doctors on frivolous grounds."

    Jeffrey Segal, M.D, a board-certified neurosurgeon and the founder and president of Medical Justice Services, Inc., said.

  • "Low-risk obstetrics has been done here for 60 years, but not anymore."

    Carl Hanson, chief operating officer of the county-run Minidoka Memorial Hospital in southern Idaho hospital's, explained as they get out of the baby business. Read

  • "I have children, and I don't know where they're at."

    Rosalinda Elison, a former patient at the UC Irvine Medical Center’s fertility clinic, said after learning that that her eggs and embryos had been stolen and implanted in another woman who then gave birth to twins.

    Read more You Don't Say, here.

Crisis by numbers:

  • $4.6 million

    New York state grants available to expand the use of electronic medical records. Such initiatives have been hailed nationally as a way to cut medication errors, save money and improve patient safety. LINK

  • $700,000

    Amount raised by Fairness and Accountability in Insurance Reform to oppose malpractice limits in Arizona. LINK

  • $450,000

    Amount the Arizona Medical Association says Arizonans for Access to Health Care has raised to decide whether to push for montetary limits on lawsuits. LINK

    Read more CRISIS BY NUMBERS, here.

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