Home Challenged Sites SiteWatch: Iowa Methodist Medical Center Sued for Mistaken Prostate Surgery

SiteWatch: Iowa Methodist Medical Center Sued for Mistaken Prostate Surgery


Tony Leys reports in the Des Moines Register that Iowa Methodist Medical Center erroneously completed a prostate cancer surgery on a man that didn’t have prostate cancer. Apparently patient plaintiff Rickie Lee Huitt had his tissue sample slides mixed up with another patient, and the pathologist incorrectly reported which man’s prostate gland was cancerous. Thereafter, the plaintiff’s urologist at Iowa Methodist read the erroneous report and proceeded to order a prostate surgery. Post-surgery the plaintiff experienced incontinence and other major side effects.

Apparently, another pathologist reviewed the prostate after the surgery and detected absolutely no cancer. Plaintiff Huitt mistakenly had his prostate surgically removed due to quality control errors within the hospital. The hospital’s CEO seeks to resolve the dispute in mediation. Occurrences of frightening quality control issues in health provider institutions have been discovered to be common at other institutions as well. The Iowa provider is part of UnityPoint which conducts clinical research. This gross negligence reported did not occur within the clinical research department, however it is still a troubling data point. We will monitor the outcome of this trial, and the actions that UnityPoint take post settlement to improve healthcare quality.


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