CT doctor injected radiation into wrong spot on patient 29 times

A Connecticut doctor could face a $5,000 fine after allegedly administering radiation 29 times to the wrong side of a patient’s mouth during treatment for a mass, FOX CT reported.

State health department lawyers proposed the fine against Dr. Richard Shumway, an oncologist at St. Francis Hospital in Hartford. Shumway, 53, has signed a consent order that includes the fine and a reprimand.

According to health inspectors, the patient visited Shumway in October 2006 with a recurrent mass in the right side of the mouth. Shumway recommended radiation therapy, but records show the radiation had been erroneously delivered to the left side of the patient’s mouth instead.

Shumway discovered the mistake after the 29th session, explained it to the patient and “a make-up plan was implemented,” the consent order said.

Another doctor, acting as a health-department consultant, reviewed the case and said while the excess treatments were a deviation from the standard of care, the final plan and the patient’s outcome were fairly similar to what could have been expected – though with a different daily dosage over time.

The state medical examining board will vote on the order Tuesday.  Shumway has no prior disciplines with the board.

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