Dr. Yeh’s rate of patient injuries as a result of his surgical incompetence is 3x – 30x the rate of injuries by surgeons from other major university hospitals. Injuries include:
- Parathyroid damage - Vocal cord paralysis - Incomplete surgery - Nerve damage - Over-operating - Shoulder nerve damage - Surgical devices left in body
Low-volume/unskilled surgeons conduct 81% of thyroid surgeries in the United States. Regardless of volume,Dr. Yeh is an unskilled thyroid cancer surgeon. We have received dozens of claims against him for botched thyroid cancer and neck surgeries.
Dr. Yeh’s most common errors are the following:
Parathyroid impairment: This happens when a surgeon injures the parathyroid glands; known as hypoparathyroidism. The result, lifelong symptoms that include tingling in the lips, fingers, and toes; dry hair, brittle nails, and dry, coarse skin; muscle cramps and pain in the face, hands, legs, and feet; cataracts; dental problems; memory loss, headaches, and muscle spasms. And, lifelong dependency on calcium carbonate and vitamin D supplements.
Vocal cord paralysis: it occurs when the Recurrent Laryngeal Nerve is Injured (RLNI). If the nerve is damaged during surgery, it can be immediately repaired if the surgeon is skilled and prepared. If a damaged RLN is not repaired, it results in lifelong problems for the patient related to swallowing, breathing, and speaking. Patients must screen their surgeon and ask if he/she uses nerve monitor equipment during surgery and if he/she has the right tools and training to repair a damaged RLN. Also, patients should ask the surgeon how many times he/she has damaged the RLN or caused vocal cord paralysis during surgery.
Residual cancer: with advancements in technology and ultrasound, this should never occur. But, a less skilled surgeon will sometimes leave malignant lymph nodes behind. This will leave the door open for more surgery. A patient may choose to forego a follow up surgery and opt for active surveillance instead.