Medicine

Surgeon admits signing initials on patients' livers

Surgeon admits signing initials on patients' livers

A surgeon who left his initials on his patients' livers has pled guilty to two charges of assault by beating.

Simon Bramhall used an argon beam coagulator - a tool which seals bleeding blood vessels with an electric beam - to burn his initials "SB" in the livers.

Bramhall pleaded guilty to two assault charges and will be sentenced on January 12, 2018.

During the liver transplant operations, Bramhall made a decision to brand his patients using something called an argon beam coagulator.

Its likely Dr Bramhall believed his initials would disappear as the patient healed due to the fact the argon beam doesn't damage the liver and its marks do disappear eventually.

Prosecutor Tony Badenoch QC accused the surgeon of abusing his position and carried out the act with a disregard for the feelings of the unconscious patients.

Bramhall leaving court
SWNSBramhall stated that he made a mistake when branding his initials

He was a liver, spleen and pancreatic surgeon at Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham for 12 years before the discovery prompted his resignation in 2014.

Patient Concern's Joyce Robins said at the time: "This is a patient we are talking about, not an autograph book".

He called the case "highly unusual and complex. both within the expert medical testimony served by both sides and in law".

"The pleas of guilty now entered represent an acceptance that that which he did was not just ethically wrong but criminally wrong. It was done in the presence of colleagues". "Even if he did put his initials on a transplanted liver, is it really that bad?"

Bramhall is now out on bail and will face sentencing January 12 at Birmingham Crown Court in central England. "The man saved my life", she said.

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