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They Got Hysterectomies They Didn't Want—and Didn't Need

Virginia OB-GYN accused of performing unnecessary procedures
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 11, 2019 11:10 AM CST
Javaid Perwaiz.   (Western Tidewater Regional Jail)

(Newser) – A Virginia OB-GYN is accused of performing hysterectomies and other procedures without the consent of his patients, sometimes falsely telling them they were at risk of cancer before doing so, NBC News reports. Javaid Perwaiz, 69, who was arrested Friday, is charged with health care fraud and making false statements to federal investigators. In one of the highlighted cases, the doctor allegedly told a woman he had discovered the "imminent onset" of cancer and needed to perform a hysterectomy; she asked for only her ovaries to be removed, but awoke from surgery "shocked" to find a complete hysterectomy had indeed been done. Perwaiz also allegedly cut her bladder while doing so, which led to her staying in the hospital for six days to treat a sepsis infection. Her medical records, she later discovered, made no mention of cancer and described the surgery as "elective."

Court documents say multiple patients accuse Perwaiz of "routinely us[ing] the 'C-word' (cancer) to scare patients into having surgery." In another case, he's accused of tying the fallopian tubes of one woman without her consent; she'd seen him after having an ectopic pregnancy. Years later, after being unable to conceive again, a fertility specialist discovered her fallopian tubes had been "burnt down to the nubs"; getting pregnant again naturally was "impossible," the documents say. Perwaiz has faced eight malpractice suits in the past and lost admitting privileges at a hospital in 1982 for unnecessary surgeries. Per the Virginian-Pilot, he was affiliated with two Virginia medical centers at the time of his arrest. The documents also accuse him of performing unnecessary cystectomies, myomectomies, tubal ligations, and D&Cs. (Woman says she underwent unnecessary procedures.)

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