Keyhole surgery at Maidstone hospital raised “serious concerns,” finds review

BMJ 2014; 348 doi: (Published 27 May 2014) Cite this as: BMJ 2014;348:g3497
  1. Clare Dyer
  1. 1BMJ

Patients were subjected to risky keyhole surgery for upper gastrointestinal cancers at Maidstone Hospital, Kent, without proper informed consent, a review team from the Royal College of Surgeons has concluded.1

Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells NHS Trust suspended the laparoscopic surgery and called in the team last July after five patients died in a seven month period. The report, which found “serious concerns” about the service and recommended that it be suspended indefinitely, was delivered to the trust last December but has only now been published after pressure from patients and their families.

The royal college reviewers found a high complication rate associated with the laparoscopic procedures, which were performed by three …

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