POMONA (CBS) — A lawsuit claims surgeons at Pomona Valley Hospital Medical Center performed experimental procedures on patients without their consent.
April Cabana, who injured her back in a car accident and needed surgery, says she now suffers from constant pain because of the alleged procedure that was performed without her knowledge.
“I feel like I’m living a horror movie right now,” Cabana, 35, told CBS2. “You have trust in your doctor; you have trust in the hospital, and to find something like this out, it destroys that trust.”
Attorney Bijan Esfandiari, who is representing Cabana in the lawsuit, said she originally thought she was having traditional back surgery.
“Later on, she found that it was a research project taking place at the hospital involving OP-1 Putty, and she was an unwitting guinea pig in that project,” he said.
The lawsuit is filed against the Pomona hospital, Dr. Ali Mesiwala, who performed the alleged surgery, and Stryker Biotech, which made the putty-like device.
Court documents show 17 patients underwent the same back procedure at the hospital.
“The manufacturer knew the combined use of Calstrux and OP-1 can lead to the migration of bone growing in areas where bone is not supposed to grow, including in nerve channels,” Esfandiari said.
The lawyer said mixing the OP-1 and Calstrux was never approved and has already landed Stryker Biotech in legal trouble.
“Stryker was promoting the combined utilization of these two products and was indicted by the U.S. Attorney’s office and pled guilty to a misdemeanor recently, paying $15 million,” Esfandiari said.
Pomona Valley Hospital Medical Center released a statement saying they “contend that it did not engage in inappropriate experimental procedures and did not cause or contribute to any injury to the plaintiff.”
KCAL9 was told Dr. Ali Mesiwala was out of the country, but his attorney said evidence will show his client acted appropriately.