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Warsaw. The court upheld the judgment of the cardiac surgeon Mirosław G.

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The District Court in Warsaw upheld the judgment of the District Court for Warsaw-Mokotów, which sentenced the cardiac surgeon Mirosław G. for exposing the patient to the immediate risk of losing his life. It is a case from 2006, when a piece of gauze was left in the left ventricle of the man’s heart during a procedure at the Ministry of Interior and Administration.

The verdict of Dr. Mirosław G. was upheld by the District Court in Warsaw on Tuesday. – For the public prosecutor, the most important thing is the valid recognition of the defendant’s guilt – prosecutor Przemysław Ścibisz from the Regional Prosecutor’s Office in Warsaw told the Polish Press Agency. – Thus, the confirmation by the court of the prosecutor’s office’s version, according to which there was gross negligence and violation of the standards of a conscientious operator doctor in the treatment of the injured patient – added the prosecutor.

The incident took place in the fall of 2006, 46-year-old Mirosław G. was the head of the Cardiac Surgery Clinic at the Central Clinical Hospital of the Ministry of Interior and Administration in Warsaw. He has been working there for five years. He had a reputation as an outstanding cardiac surgeon and transplantologist.


There was one piece of gauze left in the patient’s body

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On October 18, Florian M. came to the hospital clinic. He felt bad, he was unable to walk a few steps without having to rest. The doctor gave him a heart echo which showed atrial flutter. Florian M. had a complex heart defect and was qualified for surgery as a person whose life is at risk. The doctor examining the patient asked Mirosław G. for urgent treatment. The man was taken to the operating table on October 22, around 1 p.m. It was the second heart surgery performed that day by Dr. G.

The case files show that the risk of a patient dying during and after artificial heart valve implantation is from 9 to 13.7 percent. Investigators found that almost all the activities carried out by the team led by Mirosław G. were “typical”.

Mirosław G. placed in the heart’s ventricle, below the aortic valve, a rolled several-centimeter gauze pad, which caught calcium particles falling from the cleaned heart valve. According to investigators, the cardiac surgeon forgot to remove the rolgase that did not flow out when rinsing the heart with physiological solution. Neither of the two nurses, whose task is to check tools or gauze on the stage and in the operating field, also counted the lack of a swab during the operation. The operation was completed successfully two hours later. The condition of Florian M. was good.

About an hour after the surgery, nurse Ewa C. was counting the equipment and tools again. She searched the operating room and realized that one piece of gauze must be left in the patient’s body.

She told the doctors present at the ward about it, contacted Dr. G. by phone. Doctors wanted to reoperate Florian M. immediately, but Mirosław G. was to assure his subordinates that everything was fine, he was to claim that he did not use rolgazy during valve implantation. The second operation was canceled.

Diagnosis: foreign body or thrombus

The next day the patient was awake, witnesses testified that he was able to function, and subsequent tests, including an echo of the heart, indicated that the new valve was working properly. However, on November 28, the condition of Florian M. deteriorated dramatically, and the results of the study did not match any disease entity. Diagnosis: foreign body or thrombus. Probably the gauze swab the doctor had left in his heart repositioned itself and began blocking the circulatory system.

Florian M. was urgently on the operating table, Mirosław G. came to work to perform this procedure on purpose, although – as the medical staff claimed – he wanted to postpone the operation until the morning.

Ewa C. testified that Mirosław G. was to make blaming comments to her and was nervous during the reoperation. Later, during the interview, he was to assure her that he did not feel guilty for leaving the pad and – if the patient dies – he will cancel.

Florian M.’s heart surgery was successful. Pulling the gauze out of the heart restored his circulation, but the complications resulted in symptoms such as renal and hepatic failure, cardiovascular system. The man died on February 3, 2007. Florian M.’s family wanted to prosecute Dr. G. for exposing the patient to immediate danger of loss of life or health.

Detention, arrest and murder charge of the patient

The cardiac surgeon was detained in February 2007 and it was one of the first actions of the newly created Central Anticorruption Bureau. The agents took him out of the hospital in handcuffs, and then G. was temporarily arrested and spent three months in isolation.

The District Prosecutor’s Office in Warsaw charged him with the murder of the patient with an eventual intention, and a number of charges of accepting bribes from patients, including the sons of Florian M. The corruption charges were supported by evidence, inter alia, from wiretaps and recordings with a hidden camera.

Mirosław G. while reading the judgmentPAP / Tomasz Gzell

The trial against G. was pending in public. On May 31, 2017, the District Court for Warszawa-Mokotów issued the first judgment in this case. The cardiac surgeon was acquitted of the charge of leading to the death of the patient, and the proceedings in relation to the risk of life and health to Florian M. were discontinued.

The court then decided that Mirosław G. had exposed the patient, but then – by making the decision to reoperate – it overruled the danger himself. The cardiac surgeon’s acquittal became final, despite the prosecutor’s appeal against him. However, the topic of endangering the patient’s life was examined again by the same district court.

On August 26, 2021, almost 15 years after the death of Florian M., Judge Łukasz Malinowski sentenced this case. “The court found Mirosław G. guilty and sentenced him to 6 months’ imprisonment, suspended the execution of the sentence of imprisonment for a trial period of 1 year and obliged the accused Mirosław G. to inform the Court about the trial period” – the Court’s Independent Press Section told PAP. District in Warsaw. Mirosław G. is also expected to pay PLN 10,000. zloty. fines and costs of legal proceedings.

Main photo source: TVN, PAP / Tomasz Gzell

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