Felicia went for very minor surgery on one ankle.
Unusually, there was a medical device sales rep observing her non-medical device surgery.
Felicia woke up to discover the doctor cut out big chunks of her calves on both legs.
And he had implanted mesh in her legs. Mesh not designed for implanting.
Felicia was very active - got her degree in Exercise Science, then Personal Training Certification with American College of Sports Medicine - working at a gym - 2 year old daughter - ended up getting an injury common to athletes called Compartment Syndrome (CS) - a condition common in endurance athletes, a vascular condition - like an over-blowen tire, usually bilaterally in both legs
Pressure in muscle compartment, causes swelling, can cause nerve damage if not treated - 2 versions of CS in athletes: acute and chronic - acute can be life and limb threatening, but athletes usually get the chronic version - usually reversible with simple procedure - Felicia symptoms were tightness, pain, pinched nerve - hard to stand for even 10 minutes, otherwise a lot of leg pain - believe damage was too tight roller blades
Can take 1 - 2 years to get diagnosis - pressure testing for diagnosis of CS - Felicia had very high pressure indicating CS
Treatment is like peeling an orange and the thin white skin is like the fascia covering the muscle - procedure is to make a small slit in the fascia to relieve the pressure - reversible condition, 90% success rate - Initially (before CS diagnosis), Felicia had small pimple size point of pain on her leg - thought it may be a small cyst - found a doctor that agreed
Doctor / podiatrist has Felicia in for surgery for cyst removal - but had not been diagnosed with CS yet, assuming this 'cyst' is causing all her leg pain, just above her ankle - Felicia found out later that he didn't even think she had a cyst - also found out later that a 'mesh wound care vendor' was at her surgery and wondered why a sales rep would attend her surgery?
Day of surgery, Felicia asked to sign 2 forms: one for cyst surgery, and one for sales rep to attend surgery - Felicia read the form and it didn't say any thing about changing or implanting any thing, just that he would be in the room - Felicia reinforced that she was just there for the small cyst removal - nurses put Xs under procedure line so that nothing could be added later - witnessed by hospital nurse
Felicia confirmed that they were not doing any thing beyond cyst removal and the doctor nodded his head, but glared at her - Felicia's husband noticed and said to her 'you're making him mad' - Felicia thought she could walk out, but already in gown, and lots of people, what could go wrong?
In the small print of the form it says that nothing could be done without her consent unless life threatening emergency - Felicia walks up from surgery and half of her calve is missing, a health muscle, on both legs - doctor said it was his opinion the muscles were too big, so he cut them down
There were 2 surgeries - and the mesh product has been implanted in both legs - gets more creepier and bizarre - there is a hole in her leg - but has 2 incisions in her leg so that he can charge her insurance more for additional surgery - he doesn't get paid extra if he uses same incision - Felicia assumes he cut her other leg so he could charge for that as well
The surgery he performed doesn't really exist - at home Felicia could see all the incisions, called to the hospital immediately, and in a lot of pain - the hospital put the doctor on the phone and he was nasty to her - told her to schedule an appointment to discuss what he did and if she'll recover - 2 days later she met with the doctor and he had his nurse in the room to intimidate
Felicia asked her husband to turn on his audio recorder - doctor lied to saying Felicia has accessory muscle - justified surgery since Felicia is young and fit and would heal quickly - but weeks later having a problem with one leg where mesh was implanted - he started acting bizarre and wanted to remove it in his office
He seemed very impulsive, intimidating at times - Felicia called hospitals to say she wasn't comfortable with this doctor, but because post-operative care is free, no other doctor wanted to take over her case and not get paid - so she had to keep going back to this doctor - Felicia couldn't find the procedure he performed on her - he just made it up - even the product he put in her leg, is only supposed to be used topically, not intended to be used - or sold - for under the skin
Felicia continues to have problems - the doctor could be charming, maintain composure, but a convincing liar - sounds like he's very caring, but its false - she believes he's an expert con artist - probably done it to other patients
Felicia asked for physical therapist, but he says no - but he writes in his report that she declined conservative treatment - but Felicia was recording the convo - there was no antibiotics, or steroids to treat a reaction to the mesh - no imaging or blood test to diagnose reaction to the mesh - Felicia still believing he knows what he's doing at this point and he schedules her for another surgery
Surgery to remove mesh from one leg and will improve scar tissue - she comes out of surgery with a carving in her leg the shape of the implant - a perfect square - she thinks he carved square into her leg as way to punish her - Felician finds out the mesh is a bovine product that can't even be removed
Felicia asks for pathology report, but there wasn't one - he didn't send any thing to pathology - no record of any thing removed - she questions his behaviour - perhaps he's a sociopath
Felicia had been complaining to the hospital about the doctor - she didn't know the hospital was telling him she was complaining - hospital kept defending the doctor
Felicia asked for copy of consent form - but the copy in her chart is blank, only the doctor's signature, not her signature - Felicia recalled that the nurse had a funny look on her face just before surgery - Felicia suspects the doctor switched the consent forms to include an option to remove muscle - nurse held the form up for Felicia to see but not hold, placed it down and left the room - the doctor comes in and proceeds with surgery
When Felicia awakens she finds she has carvings in her leg - Felicia since asked herself: Why didn't the nurse hand her the form?
Felicia has an attorney - Felicia is convinced the doctor did it intentionally so hard for lawyers to understand his motive to intentionally harm - but turns out the doctor has other lawsuit against him for doing procedures outside the scope of his practice
The doctor contends he removed extra muscle and Felician questioned if it was due to Compartment Syndrome, as that would explain the swelling - the doctor admits that he considered CS - Felicia asks herself, but not the doctor, why he didn't do the standard CS procedure
The attorney was also baffled why a doctor would do something like that - he ripped out healthy muscle of a young and athletic woman - operated on both legs with multiple incisions - Felician feels violated and has launched a lawsuit
Doctor has been in practice over 30 years - but no reviews online when Felicia researched him before surgery - no indication or warning flags - she thinks he should be in jail
Terrifying waking up every day - emotional toll - frequent nightmares - every day is a reminder of disabling surgery for nothing - did finally get proper CS surgery, but still dealing with aftermath from harmful surgery 41:50
Felicia not sure if mesh is actually taken out - but the doctor had to have intentionally done something to make the square shape in her leg
Because mesh was made topically, not under the skin, so long term effects of mesh not known - doctor was trying to make a sale
Subsequent surgery has repaired some of the damage - but if had proper CS surgery she wouldn't be missing muscle and have tendon surgery - but has permanent disfigurement to her legs, pain every day, can walk, but cannot stand in one place for long - cannot do personal training business - instability in ankle muscles is ongoing concern - can only do sit down jobs now
Felicia says that if a shark bite part of her leg off she could accept it, but to be a medical experiment causes anger - "who does he think he is?"
Felicia feels angry - was also hard for her husband to initially understand the doctor would do such intentional harm
Dehumanizing to take part of a person without their consent - hospital tries to shut down her complaint, dismiss it - the doctor still working there - maybe his reputation takes a hit, but they manipulate the online reviews
Felicia advocates on social media - but hard to be advocate and traumatized person at the same time - but thinks it takes a lot of people getting the message out in different ways - still a long way to go, but getting some momentum
Surprised nobody talking about this issue online - not much about fraud and abusing patients, vs framing as an error or mistake - Felicia wants to bring about accountability
Compares driving a vehicle responsiblity same as surgery responsiblity, but the system does not treat them the same - should be criminal negligence in her case - not just a small fine for the harm they've done. END.
The injury is actually worse now as when they tried to remove it (scar tissue) nerve damage occurred.
But my original injury the compartment syndrome is reversed but I’m left with the damage he caused.
I actually close my eyes every time I open my twitter page so I don’t have to see what happened to my legs because they look totally mutilated.
You can connect with Felicia on twitter: End White Coat Worship @WhiteCoatTerror
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