Scans Misinterpreted While Tumor Metastasized, Man Says
By Barbara Wallace
2-12-2013 16:44:00

BALTIMORE (CN) - Three doctors saw a man’s abdominal tumor CT scans, but did not treat it until it metastasized, he and his wife claim in a complaint filed in Baltimore County Circuit Court.

George Edward Hardy, Jr. is suing both Advanced Radiology P.A. and Kaiser Foundation Health Plan of the Mid-Atlantic States, in addition to the three doctors, saying he “has suffered unending physical pain, emotional anguish as well as fear and anxiety, and faces an ominous prognosis,” according to the complaint.

The complaint states that in April of 2007, Hardy had a computerized tomography (CT) scan at Advanced Radiology, P.A. to monitor the progress of a mass in his abdomen.

Anthony Chiramonte, III, M.D. interpreted the scan and diagnosed “a stable, partially calcified mesenteric root. In reality, had the defendant interpreted the study correctly, he would have reported out a mass (tumor) with features of a mesenteric carcinoid,” according to the complaint. “Had the defendant Chiramonte conformed with the applicable standards of care and reported the mass appropriately, it is alleged that required follow-up studies and biopsy would have been completed which would have detected the presence of an early malignant mass -- in situ -- which would have been removed resulting in a cure for the plaintiff,” the complaint continues.

A year later, Hardy had another CT scan, and “the radiologist noted that the tumor had been present since 2006 and had grown. He properly concluded that the lesion represented a carcinoid tumor versus mesenteric fibrosis,” according to the complaint.

However, when these findings were forwarded to Hardy’s primary care physician, Kaiser Foundation’s Charles Ross Eck, Jr., M.D., action still was not taken, the complaint states. “Tragically, it is alleged that the defendant Eck ignored the radiology report issued by the defendant Advanced Radiology, P.A. As the direct and proximate result of the continuing negligence of the defendant Eck, no further studies and no intervention whatsoever was provided to the plaintiff as a result of the 2007 study,” the complaint states.

Advanced Radiology took another CT scan on Feb. 16, 2010, and radiologist Bijan Keramati, M.D. reported that the mass “had remained ‘stable’ since the prior examination,” the complaint continues. “Again, tragically, the defendant Keramati negligently interpreted this study. Had he done so in conformity with the standards of care, he would have correctly indicated that the mass had grown in size,” according to the complaint.

Almost two years later, on Dec. 30, 2011, Hardy visited his primary care physician, “with complaints of abdominal pain and vomiting,” the complaint continues. At that point, another CT scan was done, followed by an exploratory laparotomy and biopsy. “Pathology confirmed that the specimens removed represented endocrine neoplasm (cancer), that had invaded through the muscularis propria and involved the subserosal tissue as well as the mesentery,” the complaint states.

The complaint continues, “plaintiff has in the past, is presently, and will in the future continue to suffer excruciating physical pain, emotional anguish as well as fear and anxiety over his condition. Additionally, the plaintiff has in the past, is presently, and will in the future continue to incur hospital, surgical, physiotherapeutic, pharmacological, nursing, custodial and other losses and expenses for which claim is made. He has lost his ability to seek and hold gainful employment, and has had the quality of his life essentially destroyed through the ongoing negligence of these defendants."

Hardy and his wife are represented by Schochor, Federico and Staton of Baltimore.