Patel trial hears of ultrasound and CT differences

A RADIOLOGIST has been asked to explain differences between his results and the findings of a fellow radiologist a week earlier regarding the liver health of a patient who died after going under Jayant Patel's surgical knife.

Dr Patel, a former Bundaberg Base Hospital surgeon, sat through the second day of evidence in his manslaughter trial on Monday as medical experts took the stand to give evidence about his deceased patient's medical history.

Dr Patel has pleaded not guilty to unlawfully killing Mervyn Morris, 75, at Bundaberg Hospital in June 2003.

Mr Morris died in post-operative care after Dr Patel surgically removed part of his sigmoid colon to address Mr Morris's rectal bleeding.

Bundaberg radiologist Dr John Branson told the Supreme Court on Monday he was directed to conduct an ultrasound on Mr Morris in March 2003.

His findings were outlined in a report which stated a lesion was identified on Mr Morris's liver.

The lesion, teamed with Mr Morris's history of elevated liver symptoms, could have possibly meant secondary cancer or liver disease, Dr Branson said.

But a report another pathologist produced a week earlier, following a CT scan of Mr Morris, found the liver, pancreas, adrenal glands and spleen appeared to be "normal".

Dr Branson said it seemed a little "odd" he had never seen the CT scan before he conducted the ultrasound.

Dr Branson said he certainly would have "endeavoured" to look at the initial CT scan himself and discuss it with all those involved.

Karen Lee, who was an elective surgery co-ordinator at Bundaberg Base Hospital, shed a little light on Dr Patel's successes at his former workplace.

She agreed with defence barrister Ken Fleming that Dr Patel was a "motivating force" in organising elective surgeries in an attempt to ease the pressure on waiting lists.

She also confirmed he was instrumental in moving her office from the basement to near the operating theatre to improve efficiency.

The trial continues.



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