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Shouldering the Blame

View profile for Elizabeth Tolmie
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Hundreds of Walsall Manor patients recalled

Following an audit conducted in February 2020, concerns were raised that operations performed by surgeon Mian Munawar Shah had a ‘higher complication rate than usual’.  The concerns highlighted were over the shoulder operations Mr Shah had performed.  On the recommendation of the Royal College of Surgeons, it is expected as many as 600 of his previous patients will be contacted.

One of the patients of Mr Shah’s has lost the use of her arm since she was operated on. She underwent two operations, the first of which was later reviewed and deemed to have not only been unnecessary but had a screw placed inappropriately.

Every surgery carries with it a number of risks. When a person is subjected to unnecessary surgery, they are also exposed to unnecessary risks. These include:

  • Blood clots caused by surgery – most often referred to as Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT), this is a significant risk after surgery. The origin of the clot can either be at the site of the surgery or be a result of immobility while recovering. If a blood clot is not treated, it can be critical as the clot can travel to vital organs such as the lungs or even the brain which can lead to a stroke.
  • Delayed healing – everyone recovers at different rates, but those who have underlying illnesses may take longer to recover, potentially having longer stays in the hospital. An example of someone who may take more time to heal is someone with diabetes. Longer stays in the hospital can also lead to an increased risk in infection at the surgical site.
  • Poor results – there is a risk that any procedure may not go as hoped, and this can lead to more severe scarring, or even having to have the patient undergo additional procedures to correct or alter what was done previously. 

Unfortunately for one of the patients and her family, the surgery performed by Mr Shah not only had a physical impact on her but a mental one.  The mobility restrictions she experienced because of the surgery she did not require led to her being detained after trying to take her own life.  

Between 2010 and 2019, 21 medical negligence claims have been brought in relation to procedures conducted by Mr Shah.  There have been questions as to why, given the number of claims, no action has previously been taken to prevent Mr Shah from performing those surgeries sooner

An interim hearing was held on 24 June 2021 by the General Medical Council.  As a result of this hearing, an interim order was placed on Mr Shah preventing him from performing Laterjet procedures or shoulder joint replacements without supervision. These temporary measures are currently still in place as investigations continue.

At Bell Lax, we have specialists dealing with legal claims involving negligent or unnecessary surgery and the effects that this can have on you or your loved ones.  Our medical negligence solicitors work to ensure that fair compensation is obtained. Call us today on 0121 355 0011 for a free consultation if you think we may be able to help you and your family.