The Texas Medical Board on Friday punished a former Austin cardiologist in a long-running case that stemmed from allegations that he placed too many heart stents in eight patients and caused a man to die after repeated shocks from a defibrillator that the board said should not have been implanted.
The board resolved the case with Dr. Samuel DeMaio after a mediation at which all sides agreed that DeMaio's practice be reviewed by another doctor; that he enroll in courses on medical record keeping, cardiac stenting procedures and ethics; and that he pay a $10,000 fine.
The board's order says it found that DeMaio failed to meet the standard of care in treating certain patients in the Austin area between 2004 and mid-2009. Specifically, the board said DeMaio, 54, placed numerous stents that often were long and overlapped each other in areas of "insignificant or only moderate disease." Stents are mesh tubes that are inserted in narrowed or weakened arteries to improve blood flow.
Hmmmmmm . . . I wonder what motivated Dr. DeMaio to place too many stents in those eight patients with "insignificant or only moderate disease."