There have been renewed renewed calls made to Minister for Health Simon Harris to begin an investigation into the diagnosis of a number of breast cancer patients who were treated at St James’s Hospital in Dublin in 2010.
A medical negligence specialist with Orpen Franks law firm, Rachael Liston has called on the minister to begin the review. Alison McCormack, her client, was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2010 when she was aged 35. After being referred to the St James’ Hospital breast clinic she was diagnosed with DCIS, Ductal carcinoma in situ, a curable type of cancer.
Ms McCormack had a mastectomy. However there not no chemotherapy prescribed as DCIS is a non-invasive cancer.
Sadly she (Allison) was diagnosed with DCIS a second time – this tie in her lymph nodes and neck. Her treatment, on this occasion, included chemotherapy which resulted in reduced use of her right arm.
Alison secured a meeting at St James’s Hospital in 2013 to discuss questions she had over her case. At the meeting she was told that she had been misdiagnosed in 2010.
In 2010 her original biopsy had indicated that she was suffering from invasive cancer but this had gone unnoticed.
The hospital said this was a mistake that any pathologist could have made and a review of 39 of the specialist’s cases from 2010 was conducted.
Ms Liston has called for Minister for Health Simon Harris to begin a complete review, saying: “Whilst it is reassuring that efforts are being made to enhance and improve our cancer services in Ireland, clearly you would also like to ensure the health and well being of patients who may have been affected by a misdiagnosis and who may not be aware of [it]. A review of the pathology in the remaining 270 patients is likely to take no longer than one week for an independent Pathologist to complete.”
Responding Mr Harris stated that the Health Service Executive has advised that a review is not possible at this time.