Surgeon avoids being struck off after branding livers of two patients

FILE IMAGE - Consultant Simon Bramhall. A surgeon who admitted burning his initials on the livers of two unconscious transplant patients is due to be tried by a Crown Court judge. See NTI story NTILIVER. Simon Bramhall used an argon beam machine to "write" the organs of two anesthetized victims in February and August 2013 while he was working at Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham. The 53-year-old admitted two attacks last month for beating Birmingham Crown Court after prosecutors accepted his innocent assault charges. The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) said Bramhall marked his initials on the livers of patients "for no clinical reason" with a medical instrument used to seal bleeding blood vessels without their consent. - SWNS
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A surgeon who branded his initials on the livers of two patients avoided being knocked off despite pleading guilty to assaulting.
Consultant Simon Bramhall used an argon beam machine to mark the organs during the transplant.
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His initials were discovered accidentally on one of the patient's livers after the donor organ that Bramall transplanted failed about a week after performing the life-saving surgery.
The 55-year-old resigned from work at Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham and was later convicted of assault.
Although the General Medical Council advocated that he should be removed, a tribunal decided to suspend him after hearing that he was under pressure at the time of the incidents.
The Medical Practitioners Tribunal, chaired by Christina Moller, believed that "his actions were viewed as atypical by colleagues in a time of work-related stress".
"Mr Bramhall has taken responsibility for his actions, pleaded guilty at the earliest opportunity of the joint attack, shown genuine remorse and tried to apologize," the tribunal said.
Mr Bramhall was suspended from the register for five months but could not be removed as it was not "appropriate".
The Tribunal's report states: "Mr Bramhall's convictions for bodily harm, taking into account all circumstances, guidelines and relevant principles, are not fundamentally inconsistent with continued registration. Therefore, deletion was not considered an appropriate or proportionate response."
Simon Bramhall leaves Birmingham Crown Court. December 11th 2017. See NATIONAL HISTORY NNLIVER. A transplant surgeon who allegedly branded his initials on a patient's liver was accused of actually causing assault and will be tried in Birmingham Crown Court today, December 12, 2017. Consultant surgeon Simon Bramhall, 53, is charged with burns. SB 'on the livers of two transplant patients while working at Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham, West Midlands. During an operation on February 9, 2013, the experienced surgeon allegedly attacked a male patient who actually caused assault. Four months later, on August 21, 2013, a patient had a transplant and Bramhall is said to have caused her actual assault. Liver surgeons use a beam of argon to stop bleeding from the liver, but they can also use it to burn the surface of the liver and outline the area for surgery. It's usually not harmful and the markings would normally go away, but the woman's liver did not heal normally and the initials were found in a follow-up operation, it is claimed. Bramhall of Redditch, Worcestershire, denies two cases of actual assault. He was a liver, spleen and pancreatic surgeon who worked in the liver unit of QE for 12 years. - SWNS
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The Tribunal made this decision despite the fact that Hugh Barton, who represented the GMC, stated that deletion was the only "reasonable sanction" in this case. He added, "The conduct in Mr Bramhall's case was so serious that a suspension would not be enough to uphold standards and maintain public confidence in the profession."
Mr Bramhall of Tarrington, Herefordshire admitted two branding-related attacks in Birmingham Crown Court in December 2017. During the trial, the HHJ Farrer law firm described his actions as "professional arrogance of such magnitude that it strayed into criminal behavior".
The physical harm to the patient was "temporary or minor," but added that Mr Bramhall's actions caused a great deal of harm due to the "emotional or psychological impact" on the patient. A testimony from his victim states that she "cannot switch off from the ordeal I went through" and has "constant flashbacks".
Following his conviction, he was fined £ 10,000 in 2018 and given a 12-month joint injunction that included 120 hours of unpaid work.
Jon Holl-Allen QC, who represented Mr. Bramhall before the tribunal, said the surgeon "ceased employment and relinquished his license to practice" prior to the suspension.
Mr Bramhall's suspension will be reviewed in five months.

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