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Queen’s Hospital surgeon who removed ovary instead of appendix ‘can keep job’

PUBLISHED: 10:48 15 May 2014 | UPDATED: 12:47 15 May 2014

Maria De Jesus

Maria De Jesus

Nigel Howard www.nigelhowardmedia.com Cell + 44 (0)7831 235235

A bungling junior surgeon at Queen’s Hospital, Romford, who accidentally removed an ovary from a Dagenham woman who later died, can keep his job after health watchdogs ruled he was not a “danger to the public”.

Dr Yahya Al-Abed at the General Medical Council hearing Dr Yahya Al-Abed at the General Medical Council hearing

Dr Yahya Al-Abed was “out of his depth” when he performed the complicated operation on 32-year-old mother-of-three Maria De Jesus, on 23 October 2011.

Pregnant Mrs De Jesus, of Wroxall Road, died 19 days later after suffering a miscarriage and undergoing a second procedure to remove her appendix.

Al-Abed, who now works at Colchester Hospital, admitted he made a number of errors during the procedure, including removing her right ovary instead of her appendix.

Senior consultant surgeon Babatunde Julian Coker should have performed or supervised the procedure but instead went home for an afternoon nap.

Both doctors were found guilty of “serious misconduct” at the Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service in Manchester.

Al-Abed was made subject to an 18 month order of conditional registration and Coker was placed under conditions for a year.

They will be kept closely monitored by the General Medical Council and will have to attend a review hearing before they return to unrestricted work.

In front of Mrs De Jesus’s widower and three children, MPTS panel chairman Carrie Ryan-Palmer said: “The panel wishes to offer its sincere condolences to the family and to reiterate that we acted within our jurisdiction and remit.”

It had previously stated it restricted its deliberations to the doctors’ actions and omissions on 23 October 2011 and not the subsequent “tragic events”.

Mrs De Jesus was admitted to hospital with severe abdominal pain on 21 October 2011.

During the procedure Mrs De Jesus began to bleed heavily and “in the midst” of the bleeding the medic removed what he thought to be her appendix.

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