10/07/2010 // West Palm Beach, FL, US // Sandra Quinlan // Sandra Quinlan

Towson, MD—A hospital and former cardiologist face 101 lawsuits in connection with the placement of unwarranted stents into patients’ hearts. The cluster of medical malpractice lawsuits were filed Tuesday, October 5, 2010, on behalf of patients who claim they underwent unnecessary stent procedures, according to information provided by WBALTV.

An attorney filed the slew of lawsuits, naming St. Joseph Medical Center (SJMC), Mid-Atlantic Cardiovascular Associates and Dr. Mark Midei as defendants in the case. The pending litigation reportedly accuses the defendants of “conspiracy, fraud and medical negligence.”

While it is generally requisite that there be a 70 percent artery blockage before a stent procedure is performed, the plaintiffs’ lawyer contended, “In these cases, Dr. Midei would see a blockage that was 20 percent.”

“He would put in writing that it was 90 percent, thereby putting a stent in an artery that simply didn’t need it — a completely unnecessary stent,” the attorney added.

Dr. Medei, who faced unspecified charges by the Maryland Medical Board of Physicians this summer, left St. Joseph’s in 2009.

Complications such as blood clots, which could lead patients to depend on blood-thinning drugs, can apparently result from stent procedures.

Additionally, the medical malpractice lawsuits allege St. Joseph’s ignored Midei’s careless actions and would not agree to settle with the patients who were subject to them.

The lawyer representing the plaintiffs’ alleged, “These lawsuits were filed because of St. Joseph Medical Center’s refusal to be fair to their patients. They sent a letter informing these patients that they had a stent that was placed that was not medically necessary.”

With regard to the said letters, SJMC issued the following statement:

“The fact that SJMC sent a letter to certain patients is not proof of liability. SJMC will take responsibility when patients demonstrate that inappropriate care has caused them an injury… The hospital is also open to talking with any patient who believes that he or she has a claim. In those cases where SJMC has appropriate medical information, it will continue to seek a fair and satisfactory resolution with its patients.”

Nonetheless, the plaintiffs’ attorney contended the hospital would not settle with clients, even after spending more than 20 hours in negotiations.

“All of my clients and I have been available for negotiations. When St. Joseph’s and Dr. Midei are ready to talk, we’re ready to listen,” the lawyer added, noting that there is a potential for nearly 100 additional lawsuits to be filed.

The case is underway.

Legal News Reporter: Sandra Quinlan- Legal News for Maryland Medical Malpractice Lawyers.

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