26 February 2008

Transplant surgeon charged in patient's death

Ouch. This is going to be chilling for the transplant community. To be sure, it sounds like there were protocol violations, and that the surgeon needs a refresher on the importance of meticulous ethics in organ harvesting. But a felony? You've got to be kidding me.


  1. It's scary either way--that he's falsely accused or that he really was "hastening" the donor's death. Very chilling, indeed!

  2. Patient was dead either way for christ sake! Damn bygots and hypocrits

  3. "Dr. Roozrokh has pleaded not guilty, and his lawyer said the charges were the result of overzealous prosecutors. "

    This is a big deal. I think it is a systemic problem. Prosecutors are trained from law school forward to be creative in their application of criminal law. It is one thing to stretch grounds for civil law suits and defenses of the same: but criminal lawyers--particularly prosecutors--need to play it straight.

  4. Max: the patient was not dead at the time this surgeon requested or performed the interventions in question. The distinction may seem trivial, but it's actually a critical difference. The surgeon was there to recover the organs for transplantation. He should not have been in the room prior to the patient's death, much less directing the care of the patient prior to death. There are very specific protocols in place to prevent ethical breaches such as this one.

    Criminal? I'm not sure. Unethical? yes, almost without question (assuming facts are accurate as reported). Career ending? Probably, and (again assuming accuracy in the reporting) it should be.


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