Donors organ damaged, recipient died. Graz hospital offered 12,000 euros and asked the widow to be silent.

Donors organ damaged

Blanka Stelcer is sad. And angry. Very angry. “These were no complications during surgery. These were mistakes. That’s why my husband had to leave.”

Drago Stelcer died after heart transplantation in the University Hospital Graz: As a commissioned by the official arbitration panel later found out, he was a no longer functioning donor organ used – it was damaged during the removal, the aorta was injured.

However, the second surgical team had already removed Stelcer’s, own heart. The other had to be used, but nine emergency operations after that could no longer prevent the death of the 60- year-old.

“I tend to criminal charges for grossly negligent homicide,” announced the Graz-based lawyer Karin Prutsch. She has been representing Blanka Stelcer since Drago’s death nearly two years ago – that’s how long the civil dispute with the Styrian Hospital Company (KAGES) is going on. The hospital operator was also prepared to pay after a conciliation procedure. 12,000 euros were offered in the previous year as a settlement amount. However, this was linked to the request that Blanka Stelcer has said nothing about the case, as well as her lawyer.

Not talking about the circumstances of the death of the man with whom she was married for 38 years is out of the question for the widow. “That’s like silence money. I am not for sale”, emphasizes Stelcer. “This is not about money. I’m not rich, but I do not want to earn my husband’s death. ”

These circumstances are, so the expert in his expertise in January 2018, questionable. It is possible to take the donor and recipient heart in a timely manner, but “contrary to the usual procedure”: “Of course, the recipient heart may only be excised if the surgeon, who has taken the donor organ, has inspected the excised heart and found it suitable.”A team must know something like that, notes the appraiser. The injuries of the donor organ itself can only be explained by a “surgical-technical problem”, formulated the expert.

To put it more clearly, someone might have messed up during the procedure. “This problem can only be explained by a lack of specialist knowledge and experience as well as a lack of practice,” the expert stated.

The out-of-court settlement procedure is obsolete, Stelcer and Prutsch are now suing the KAGES under civil law. On the part of the hospital holding the allegations are not commented. “For privacy reasons, we can not comment on ongoing proceedings,” says a KAGES spokesperson.

The widow is responsible: “If someone makes a mistake, he has to stand by it,” says Blanka Stelcer. “It’s important to me that the doctors bear responsibility. So that no other families after me have to endure such suffering.”