A doctor is accused of performing hysterectomies and other unnecessary medical procedures on patients without their consent
Posted November 11, 2019 2:13 p.m. EST
CNN — A Virginia doctor has been arrested after he was accused of performing hysterectomies and other unnecessary medical procedures on patients without their consent, according to a federal affidavit.
The affidavit said an investigation into Javaid Perwaiz, 69, was launched in September 2018 after the FBI received a tip from a hospital employee that the doctor may be performing unnecessary surgeries on patients.
According to the affidavit, one patient was told by Perwaiz in 2012 that pre-cancerous cells had been detected during an exam and that a hysterectomy would be the best course of action. The patient wanted a less invasive procedure and thought that they had agreed on a laparoscopic surgery to remove her ovaries. Instead, when she woke up from surgery, she found out Perwaiz had performed a total abdominal hysterectomy and had perforated her bladder in the process, which caused her to develop sepsis and be hospitalized for six days, the affidavit said.
A hysterectomy is the surgical removal of a woman's uterus, which is where a fetus grows when a woman is pregnant. Sometimes the cervix, ovaries and fallopian tubes are also removed. Hysterectomies are very common, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which says that about 33% of women in the United States have had one by age 60.
The doctor faces charges of health care fraud and making false statements relating to health care matters, according to the affidavit. He is being held without bail until his detention hearing later this week.
CNN has reached out to the attorney representing Perwaiz but has not yet heard back.
A second patient reported she had been treated by Perwaiz for endometriosis and an ectopic pregnancy from 2011 to 2014 and found out when she went to obtain fertility treatments from another doctor in 2014 that her fallopian tubes had been "burnt down to nubs, making natural conception impossible," the affidavit said. The patient was a Medicaid recipient and her insurance had been billed for unnecessary medical treatments by Perwaiz, the affidavit said.
Perwaiz has been the subject of at least eight malpractice lawsuits, the affidavit noted. In those lawsuits, plaintiffs allege he falsified medical records to justify unnecessary procedures, performed up to 30 surgeries in one day and provided "substandard care" that caused permanent injuries in at least three patients, according to the affidavit's description of the lawsuits. Two patients suffered life-threatening injuries, the affidavit said. The disposition of the malpractice lawsuits is not clear.
The hospital employee who tipped off the FBI told investigators that often "the patients were not aware of the procedures they were undergoing," according to the affidavit.
This isn't the first time the doctor has faced allegations of poor medical care.
Perwaiz lost hospital privileges at Maryview Hospital in Portsmouth, Virginia, in 1982 for performing unnecessary surgeries and "poor clinical judgment," the affidavit said.
A spokeswoman for the Atlantic Group of Bon Secours Mercy Health, which now operates Maryview Hospital as Bon Secours Maryview Medical Center, told CNN Perwaiz is not employed by Bon Secours or the Bon Secours Medical Group.
"Like many independent physicians, he has held privileges at different hospitals/health systems," said Jenna Green.
The affidavit said Perwaiz's medical license was temporarily revoked after he pleaded guilty to two counts of tax evasion in 1996 but was reinstated two years later.