Tuesday, 9 August, 2022
HomeMedico-LegalUK surgeon struck off roll after ‘trademarking’ transplanted livers

UK surgeon struck off roll after ‘trademarking’ transplanted livers

An “arrogant” UK surgeon who got caught branding his initials on the transplant livers of his patients using an argon beam burner, has been struck off the medical register, reports RT News.

The practitioner had previously been convicted on two counts of common assault.

The liver-branding surgeon, Dr Simon Bramhall, was erased from the UK medical register by the Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service (MPTS).

The MPTS said the his actions were an “act borne out of a degree of professional arrogance“ that “undermined” public trust for medics. The ruling means Bramhall will no be longer able to engage in any medical practice in Britain.

He had apparently been doing the “branding” for a number of years, it was discovered, after he was caught using an argon beam burner – a coagulant device commonly used in surgeries – to inscribe his initials on transplant organs. His “trademark” was discovered by another surgeon after the transplant of one patient failed and the practitioner had to perform emergency surgery. The liver was found to bear sizeable 4cm initials of Bramhall on its side.

In December 2017, the doctor admitted two counts of common assault by beating, and also confessed to branding the livers of two patients back in February and August of 2013 while working at Birmingham's Queen Elizabeth Hospital. Since the personal mark did not do any actual damage to the patients, he walked away from the case with a community work order and a fine of £10,000.

The doctor was suspended in December 2020, with the MPTS stating his actions displayed such “professional arrogance” that it effectively “strayed into criminal behaviour”. Last June (2021), however, he was deemed fit for practice once again and the suspension order was revoked.

The latest revisiting of the case, however, produced a different outcome for Bramhall. While the tribunal acknowledged that as a result of his actions “no lasting physical damage was caused to either patient”, one of them suffered “significant emotional harm” from the liver affair, which was extensively covered by media at the time.


RT News article – Surgeon caught branding transplant organ banned from practice (Open access)


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