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Medically unnecessary spine surgeries lead to patient's death

Sadly, medically unnecessary operations are becoming prevalent in American health care. Surgery can be a big moneymaker for both doctors and hospitals, so many physicians are tempted to recommend operations even when they aren't the best option for patients.

A series of lawsuits against Lewis & Clark Specialty Hospital allege that the institution turned a blind eye while one of its surgeons raked in revenue by performing unnecessary operations. One of the malpractice lawsuits involves the death of a spinal surgery patient. The woman died after numerous spine surgeries amounting to nearly $1 million in bills.

These lawsuits bring attention to the motives of specialty hospitals, which offer a one-stop shop for the diagnosis and treatment of specific health problems. These niche-focused hospitals have a strong self-interest in recommending treatment that brings them the most revenue, usually surgery.

Surgery - especially spine operations - bring a great deal of risks and post-op complications. When viable alternatives are available, patients should not be urged to undergo complicated surgeries.

If you feel you have been seriously harmed by a doctor goading you into unnecessary surgery, speak with an experienced medical malpractice lawyer to discuss your legal options.

Source: Argus Leader, "A Lawsuit Is Shining Fresh light On Specialty Hospitals," Jonathan Ellis, June 8, 2014

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