Hospital suspends two consultants: Operations 'may have been unnecessary'

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The Independent Online
A MAN whose larynx was removed at a prestigious London hospital and now cannot speak believes it was done unnecessarily and is considering suing for the loss of his voice.

St Mary's Hospital in Paddington, west London, admitted yesterday that an ear, nose and throat surgeon has been suspended and an inquiry is taking place into the case of Vincent Oliver, 68, a retired factory worker. It also admitted that another surgeon had been suspended over a similar incident in which a women had a breast removed.

In both cases it appears that laboratory results subsequently showed that the patients did not have cancer after all. Mr Oliver claims that 10 days after his surgery on 25 April, the hospital admitted that a tumour in his larynx was benign.

The hospital confirmed that Solomon Abramovich, an ENT specialist, was suspended, as was Margaret Ghilchik, a general surgeon.

In a statement, a hospital spokeswoman said: 'Two consultant surgeons have been suspended from duty at St Mary's Hospital, Paddington. A consultant ear, nose and throat surgeon was suspended in May to allow an inquiry to take place into whether or not a patient's voice box was removed unnecessarily during an operation. The results of an internal inquiry are being examined to determine whether or not a further investigation, being drawn from within and outside the hospital, is necessary.

'In March, a consultant general surgeon was suspended to allow an inquiry to take place into whether or not a patient's breast was removed unnecessarily. An initial inquiry has been completed and an independent inquiry is now under way. It's not certain at this time when this will be completed.'