Source: Sydney Lupkin / ABC News
Cristobal “Cris” Arteaga had come to terms with the fact that his stepfather, Silvino Perez, had been in a vegetative state for more than a year following complications from open-heart surgery, when he said an anonymous phone call suddenly shattered his peace.
The man on the other end of the line, Arteaga said, told him that his stepfather’s cardiologist, Dr. Parvaiz Chaudhry, at Fresno Community Regional Medical Center in California, had walked out before completing Perez’s surgery to attend a luncheon, leaving Perez’s chest cavity open on the table.
The caller told Arteaga that the physician’s assistant was left to close Perez’s chest even though he wasn’t qualified to do so, Arteaga said. When complications arose and Perez’s heart stopped, Chaudhry drove back from the luncheon, 20 or 30 minutes away, to save the patient, Arteaga said the caller told him. But the brain damage had already been done.
Artaega said the caller told him that this was why Perez was left in a vegetative state.
“It was awful to hear that,” Arteaga said. “I just want people to know what kind of doctor he is. You go in there and you trust this individual with your life. … The fact that he would do this to an individual – one individual – is too much.”
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