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Death by Colonoscopy

My mother was 85 years old and except for a few mild heart attacks and two stents placed in her arteries was in good shape, all things considered.  Because she had iron deficiency anemia her primary physician scheduled her for a gastroscopy and colonoscopy to see if there was internal bleeding.  There was no rectal bleeding or fevers or discomfort.  She had been on 2.5 mgs of Coumadin for a long time.  Although the record states she had last taken Coumadin 40 hours before, because her memory was failing I think she probably took it much closer to the procedures than that, along with all the other medications she took.  She also was taking half an aspirin a day.  The hospital record states that the Gastroenteroligist did not want any blood tests taken for some reason.  The record also states that he did not have her chart or history.  He removed a "small polyp" and stated only that it was a "difficult" procedure.  Q's I have:  Why would the doctor not have a patients charts to consult before proceeding?  Why would he specifically request that no lab work take place, especially the Pro-Time blood test which measures Coumadin levels?  Why would he even remove a small polyp from an 85-year-old lady with cardiac problems; there is no family history of colon cancer at all.  Because of the money to be made in those procedures have they stopped recommending Geritol for iron deficiency anemia?  Of course they had to rush her back to the hospital to repair the site of that polyp removal.  And the sweetest litle lady you ever knew died of a stroke in the hospital soon after.  I a
6 Responses
Avatar universal
All of your questions concerning your mother's doctor sound like valid questions that need to be answered by the doctor himself.
After my mom passed away I too had questions and I phoned the doctor to explain what caused this and what if that..and he explained everything to me. Phone him and ask him...it is your right to ask questions and expect answers. If you are still not satisfied with his answers and think his behavior was negligent and contributed to your mom's passing..get yourself some legal advice.
I am really sorry to hear about your mom and I know how very painful it is as I went through it two years ago with my mom.
First a small heart attack, then a stroke and brain hemmorage and after much suffering for a month and her still being aware of the bad situation she was in, her heart gave out and she died.
A part of my insides died on that day too.
Let us take comfort in the fact that we were incredibly lucky to have our mother's for as long as we did and know they are whole and healthy in a better place.
take care, I wish you well
Avatar universal
I am so very sorry about your Mom. Yes, I think that you have every right to some answers. I hope that you can get some. I cannot speak professionally in any way of course but your post makes me sad (for you and your loss) but mad as well. I don't know what the point would be for putting an 85 year old through that kind of test with no other symptoms or history of colon cancer. I do hope that the doctor has a reasonable explanation for you. Take care and I will be thinking of you.
Avatar universal
Blood work should of been taken prior to the surgery, PT/PTT, CBC, etc. etc.

I too do not understand why in God's name that they would think of operating on a 85 year old woman for a polyp with her history.

I too am very sorry this happened to her.

Avatar universal
Did you post over at ask Dr. Ketover on webmd about your mother not too long ago? I'm so sorry to hear about your loss.
Avatar universal
A related discussion, colonoscopy was started.
Avatar universal
A related discussion, Stomach Bloated any similar experiences was started.
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