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Unconscious patient's cell phone captures doctors mocking him during colonoscopy.
22 Apr 2014
A Virginia man is suing after his cell phone captured audio of doctors allegedly mocking him while he was under anesthesia for a colonoscopy.
The plaintiff, D.B., says doctors joked about firing a gun up his rectum and accused him of having STDs during his medical procedure.
"On April 18, 2013, during a colonoscopy, plaintiff was verbally brutalized and defamed by the very doctors to whom he entrusted his life while under anesthesia," the complaint says.
D.B. sued Safe Sedation LLC and Safe Sedation Management in Fairfax County Court for defamation, infliction of emotional distress and illegally disclosing his health records.
The patient said he left his phone on and recorded everything on accident. When he later drove home with his wife, they discovered the recording.
The doctors, Tiffany Ingham and Soloman Shah, are not named as defendants but are accused of mocking D.B. as soon as the anesthetic knocked him out.
"Tiffany Ingham, M.D. started to mock, and then continued to mock, the amount of medicine required to anesthetize plaintiffs," the complaint states. "Referring to plaintiff, Soloman Shah, M.D. commented that a teaching physician known to both him and Tiffany Ingham, M.D. 'would eat him for lunch.'
"Tiffany Ingham, M.D. agreed that plaintiff would be 'eaten alive' and also jokingly discussed a hypothetical of firing a gun up a rectum," it says.
"And really, after five minutes of talking to you in pre-op I wanted to punch you in the face and man you up a little bit," Ingham allegedly said to the patient while he was under.
Doctors allegedly discussed D.B.'s prescription medication and an irritation he had on his penis.
"A medical assistant at GMA touched plaintiff's penis during the colonoscopy," the complaint states. "Although plaintiff's penis is not involved in a colonoscopy, the medical assistant noted there was not 'much of a penile rash.' Tiffany Ingham, M.D. responded, 'No, you'll accidentally rub up against it. Some syphilis on your arm or something.' Solomon Shah, M.D. responded, 'That would be bad. That would be real bad.'"
"Tiffany Ingham, M.D. then stated to all present in the operating suite that, 'It's probably tuberculosis in the penis, so you'll be all right.'"
The lawsuit notes that the plaintiff has neither disease.
In a final remark on tape, Ingham allegedly said she would make a note in D.B.'s file that he had hemorrhoids even though he didn't.
He's seeking $1 million in compensatory damages and $350,000 in punitive damages.
No need to anesthetize everyone
I did just fine during my colonoscopy with no anesthesia at all. I think doctors who anesthetize all patients are doing it for the same reason that they refuse to allow patients to have a DVD of the procedure: they don't want to listen to patient's questions either during the procedure or later on.
Colonoscopy souvenir DVDs
I am shocked that doctors across the US have stopped providing DVDs of colonoscopies in response to medical records requests. It's okay that they don't automatically give souvenir DVDs, but it's not okay to violate the law regarding patient's rights to access to their medical records. Doctors even claim that it's a cost-cutting measure; this is obviously false since digital memory is getting cheaper by the month and has always been cheaper and more compact than the VHS tapes on which colonoscopies used to be saved.