Friday, December 28, 2007

New quackery page: Saihb Sinuhe Halil

Saihb Sinuhe Halil lost his medical license, thank God, over the care of these three patients:

The medical board addressed the care of patient T.G., age 19. I will call her Thelma. The following account comes from California medical board Case No. D-5193, OAH Case No. L-60576.

Thelma was 22 weeks pregnant when she went to Women's Medical Center of Los Angeles on December 28, 1988. Halil performed the first of two pre-abortion laminaria insertions. The medical board noted failure to perform an examination prior to planning surgery, and a lack of informed consent.

After a change of laminaria on the 29th, Thelma returned on December 30 for her abortion. Despite what Halil clearly knew, from the two laminaria changes, was an advanced pregnancy, he first attempted to perform a suction abortion without any anesthesia. Thelma, in so much pain that she had difficulty remaining still, repeatedly screamed, "You're killing me!" "I'm dying!" "Stop!" and "I can't stand the pain!" She lost consciousness multiple times.

There was no mystery to why Thelma was in such horrible pain; Halil had pulled so hard on her internal structures that he bent his forceps, then "broke the sterile field by using an unsterilized pair of desk scissors to cut inner body organs of [Thelma]." Halil pulled out Thelma's right ovary and fallopian tube, severed her left fallopian tube, and caused a large uterine rupture. He "lacerated and rendered necrotic almost four feet of small intestine" and "left the fetus floating in the abdominal cavity."

Halil didn't monitor Thelma's blood loss during the procedure, then delayed transferring her to a hospital and delayed his own arrival to treat her, allowing her to go into potentially fatal hypovolemic shock from blood loss.

Before transferring her, Halil had gotten Thelma to consent to a diagnostic laparoscopy at the hospital, but instead Halil "proceeded to perform a full invasive surgical procedure." He worked to repair "what was left of her uterus," and removed of about 4 feet of her small intestine. After surgery, Halil instructed Thelma to return for follow-up care.

Thelma attended regular follow-up appointments January through May of 1989. During those visits, Halil did not inform Thelma of "the full extent of damage she had sustained as a result of the abortion."

To add creepiness to his other wrongdoing, while Thelma was at Halil's office for appointments, he "kissed her face and lips, caressed her face, rubbed her shoulders, and suggested they go out together," Thelma accepted an invitation to go to lunch. "While at lunch, [Halil] rubbed her thigh, knee, and shoulders, hugged and kissed her, and told her he would like to see more of her. After that luncheon, [Thelma] terminated all contact."

I have information on two other cases involving Halil:

Martha H., age 20, filed suit against Halil, and the medical board investigated her case. She went to La Clinica Feminina on November 23, 1988, for a 7-week abortion to be performed by Halil. He failed to perform a proper examination of Martha before proceeding. He punctured her uterus twice and her bowel at least once, but neither informed Martha of this nor noted it on her chart. He allowed his unlicensed staff to make the decision to discharge the patient from the facility. On November 27 she was admitted to a hospital, and there the inuries were discovered and surgically treated. On December 20 she had to be again admitted to the hospital and required additional surgery to treat a bowel obstruction, periappendicitis, and peritonitis. (LA County Superior Court Case No. C720334; Los Angeles Times 7-6-93; California medical board Case No. D-5193, OAH Case No. L-60576)

The medical board investigated the case of Vivian Q. Vivian underwent laminaria insertion by Halil at La Clinica Femenina on November 3, 1987. Halil did not perform an adequate physical examination or properly determine the gestational age. As a result he did not use enough laminaria to adequately dilate Vivian's cervix. "[Halil] halted the procedure because he suspected he had perforated the patient's uterus." Halil performed an ultrasound, which "determined that the pregnancy was still intact (albeit with a maimed fetus)." Rather than accurately charting this or informing Vivian, he discharged her. On November 7, Vivian was admitted to the hospital, suffering from a perforated utuers and a necrotic sigmoid colon. She required a colostomy and surgery to repair her uterus. One bright spot was that on February 28, doctors were able to repair her bowel and restore normal function without the colostomy. (Los Angeles Times 7-6-93; California medical board Case No. D-5193, OAH Case No. L-60576)

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