Doctor ‘categorically’ denies complaint

Medical Council told of alleged ‘failure’ to diagnose patient’s jaw line cancer over three visits

A Dublin-based doctor ‘categorically’ denies that a patient told him of a lump which later turned out to be cancerous.

A Dublin-based doctor ‘categorically’ denies that a patient told him of a lump which later turned out to be cancerous.

Fri, Apr 12, 2013, 02:00

A Dublin based doctor has "categorically" denied that a patient told him of a lump which later turned out to be cancerous.

Dr Derek Graham of Newcastle in west County Dublin is facing a range of allegations of professional misconduct and poor professional performance arising out of his failure to diagnose a cancerous swelling on the jaw of a patient, Gareth Gorevan, in 2010.

Giving evidence at the Medical Council Fitness to Practise Committee this morning Dr Graham said Mr Gorevan was "erroneous" in his recollection of consultations.

Dr Graham said Mr Gorevan had presented with flu-like symptoms in February 2010 and had an infected gland and was treated on that basis. He said Mr Gorevan had returned in March complaining of a acne-type rash and when treating him for this, Dr Graham had recommended a “full panel” of blood tests.

However he said he understood Mr Gorevan had never gone for the blood tests and still had the forms among his paperwork.

Dr Graham said he was not told of any concern about swelling on Mr Gorevan's left jaw and did not notice any abnormality. He told the hearing a third consultation in August was because Mr Gorevan simply wanted a repeat prescription for his acne.

Asked by his counsel Cathal Murphy BL if he recalled Mr Gorevan complaining of the swelling which turned out to be cancerous, he said: "I categorically deny it".

Dr Graham said he had good notes of the consultations and would not have spent a lot of time writing notes about acne if his attention had been drawn to a swollen jaw.

Mr Gorevan has told the hearing Dr Graham's version of event was “absolutely outrageous” and “a fabrication”.

He said had complained of the swelling in each of the three consultations with Dr Graham and when seen by another doctor on a fourth occasion was immediately referred to cancer specialist, John Kinsella.

Mr Kinsella diagnosed a squamous cancer. Mr Gorevan was treated for this and received chemotherapy and radiation.