Oh, Crap: Doctors Remove Wrong Kidney in Arlington Man

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Two kidneys, one right, one left. That's very important to remember when reaching for a scalpel.

There are a few things you never, ever, want to hear a doctor say. Like "uh-oh." Or "oops." Lucky for Glenn Hermes, he was far away from the operating table when his doctors had their "oops" moment.

In December 2012, Hermes first visited the doctor for an odd growth on his testicles. After consultations with Dr. Robert Stroud of Lonestar Urology, Hermes was informed that he had a suspicious, and likely cancerous, growth on his left kidney.

At Stroud's recommendation, the kidney was removed and sent to the labs, and Hermes went along on his way until he got a call telling him that the pathology report on the kidney declared it a perfectly healthy, cancer-free organ.

In fact, it was his right kidney, still in him, that was still riddled with cancer. His healthy left kidney, meanwhile, had already been left to sit in a jar of formaldehyde and tossed away as biohazardous waste. But not before being hacked to shreds by a desperate pathologist looking for a nonexistent tumor.

Last year, Hermes underwent another surgery that removed the cancerous portion of his right kidney. He has been cancer-free for over a year, but he still has only partial kidney function. He must wait another four years of being cancer-free before he is eligible for a kidney transplant to regain full function. Even then, there are no guarantees of a successful surgery.

Hermes, along with his wife, Bernadette, are now suing Dr. Robert Stroud, Dr. David Fenyes and their associated practices -- Lonestar Urology and Radiology Associates of North Texas, respectively -- who were responsible for Glenn Hermes' case, for over one million dollars. Plaza Medical Center, where the surgery was performed, is not included in the suit. The Hermeses have sought the help of North Texas attorney Darrell Keith, for the case.

Keith and the Hermeses are clearly gearing up for a fight. Keith has made his name handling big-time medical malpractice lawsuits, and Hermes is himself already well-acquainted with the medical field as the CEO of the Fort-Worth-based Hyperbaric Oxygen Technologies, Inc.

"Mr. Hermes trusted, believed and relied upon Dr. Stroud and his statements and representations that he was suffering from a left kidney mass that was potentially cancerous," said Keith in the lawsuit petition. In the petition, Keith highlighted how much Hermes relied on his doctors to make the appropriate diagnosis. He elaborated on this sentiment to Unfair Park. "Medical mistakes hurt thousands of lives every year," Keith said. "A great wrong was done to him, and he's entitled to a just redress for the damages and harm done to him."

We attempted to reach the doctors for comment, but they were unavailable.

According to an interview with the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Hermes says it's not the handsome amount of money for himself that he's after. Since the botched surgery, he's had one too many sleepless nights, and wants a little peace of mind to be able to provide for his wife and family. "There isn't a day that goes by where I don't think about this," he said. "I'm getting to the point where I should be enjoying life and thinking about retirement and not thinking about a transplant. It's pretty emotional."


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7 comments
drjeff0001
drjeff0001

I hate to point out the obvious and I do not want to pile on a health care provider, but if you want to see why malpractice insurance rates are still astronomical in spite of legislation meant to curtail them, just read this story.  The number three killer of humans in this country is medical error (JAMA, 2007). Hopefully this gentleman will be able to live a quality life eventually but the doctor must face the fact that he messed up big time.

CogitoErgoSum
CogitoErgoSum topcommenter

Check Stroud's Facebook and Twitter accounts. He may have been playing Candy Crush Saga while performing this operation.

primi_timpano
primi_timpano topcommenter

For operations of this kind the patient should use a sharpie to indicate the healthy body part and the one to be operated on. I suggest dark green for the latter and bright red for the former. Seriously.

ChrisYu
ChrisYu

the good news is, the website is working now.

ozonelarryb
ozonelarryb

So, crossmatch the doctors and hospital personnel involved for transplant.

And, if you question legality, remember, ane eye for an eye in absolutely perfect terms. And, it's legal to force blood test for DUI.

TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

Well, you have to admit, those instructions are a bit unclear.

ryan762
ryan762

@primi_timpano Doesn't appear that would have worked in this case as the initial report was that the cancer was in the left kidney, according to this story.

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