As Helen Church woke up one morning just before Christmas 2012, the pain that had been building for weeks behind her right eye reached an excruciating climax.
Screaming in agony, she ran around her east-end Toronto apartment before finally managing to call 911 and passing out.
For the second time in short succession, she had fallen victim to health care gone badly awry.
Just two years earlier, Ms. Church went to a nearby hospital to have an ovary removed as treatment for a painful cyst. She left hours later with the ovary still in place – and a piece of mesh embedded in her abdomen to repair a non-existent hernia.
Then, months later, a specialist replaced an artificial, cataract-correcting lens that he said had started to wear. The result: That eye was now blind and growing increasingly painful.
The ophthalmologist, another specialist told her later, had implanted the lens in the wrong position, obscuring her sight and puncturing a duct, causing a slow bleed and massive pressure.
“There was so much blood in there, it blew the eyeball out of my head. It was hanging on my cheek,” said Ms. Church, a razor-sharp 83-year-old. “The blood was just dripping everywhere … I was hysterical, the pain was so bad.” . . . [Full Text]