Man dies in wrong diagnosis
A MAN who died of cancer was wrongly diagnosed by a doctor as having Lyme disease and treated for 30 weeks with antibiotics.
The Health Care Complaints Commission prosecuted Dr Peter Mayne before a Medical Professional Standards Committee and found the doctor guilty of unsatisfactory professional conduct.
The patient was a 68-yearold smoker suffering from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. He also had documented ischaemic heart disease, hypertension and emphysema.
In February 2012, Dr Mayne diagnosed the man with Lyme disease. The tickborne disease is not recognised in Australia because researchers say the bacteria responsible has not been found in local animals or ticks.
Despite that, Dr Mayne inappropriately treated the patient with antibiotic injections for Lyme disease over 30 weeks and failed to investigate or consider that the patient might have cancer due to his age and medical history.
The patient relocated from the NSW north coast to Queensland in early 2013 and consulted a different doctor, where he was diagnosed with lung cancer with brain secondaries. He died in mid-2013, aged 69.