Shoulder surgeon may have put hundreds of patients at risk as decade of complaints revealed

Hundreds of patients who had surgery at Walsall Manor Hospital are being contacted - itdarbs/Alamy Stock Photo
Hundreds of patients who had surgery at Walsall Manor Hospital are being contacted - itdarbs/Alamy Stock Photo

Hundreds of patients may have been put at risk after undergoing operations by a shoulder surgeon, a hospital has suggested, following a decade of complaints.

Walsall Healthcare NHS Trust has set up a helpline and will be writing to up to 600 patients after concerns were raised about some procedures.

One patient who was operated on by Mian Munawar Shah at Walsall Manor Hospital is living in “constant pain” and unable to raise her arm.

Another, Joanna Aldridge, won compensation after Mr Shah severed her radial nerve during surgery at a private hospital run by Spire Healthcare in 2010.

Mr Shah has temporary restrictions imposed on his practice following an interim hearing on June 24 last year.

The order prevents the surgeon from doing Latarjet procedures or shoulder joint replacements without supervision. The General Medical Council confirmed to The Telegraph that these restrictions on his registration remain in place until Sept 23 2023.

Mian Munawar Shah, consultant surgeon at Walsall Healthcare NHS Trust
Mian Munawar Shah, consultant surgeon at Walsall Healthcare NHS Trust

Angela Glover underwent two operations by Mr Shah. It later emerged a screw had been inappropriately placed during the first procedure, the BBC reported.

Her partner, Simon Roberts, said she was in “constant pain” and it has affected her mental health.

He told the BBC: “Angela’s not confident to hold a baby and that’s very frustrating if you can’t pick your grandchildren up and hold them.

“I see the tears in her eyes sometimes and that breaks my heart too.”

The trust is to recall up to 600 patients who may have been affected, the BBC reported.

Ms Aldridge received compensation in 2016 and subsequently wrote to the General Medical Council asking it to investigate Mr Shah. The GMC said the incident had occurred too long ago to investigate, according to her solicitor.

Nick Tubb, of Shoosmiths, which represented Ms Aldridge, said the case raised questions about whether there was a “missed opportunity” nearly six years ago to investigate Mr Shah.

“I can understand administrative reasons why they might have a time limit, but a time limit seems rather arbitrary when a clinician is continuing to practice and the patient safety issue is still very much relevant,” he told The Telegraph.

In 2020, the Royal College of Surgeons was invited by Walsall Healthcare Trust to carry out a review of its surgery.

A further review by the RCS relating to trauma and orthopaedic surgery was carried out last year and reported to the trust in April.

An RCS spokesman said: “Both of the college’s review reports made recommendations for the trust to take, to ensure patient safety is protected, and to improve the services that were reviewed.

“The college is currently actively following up with the trust the actions it has taken to address the recommendations made in the report.”

‘Sincere apologies’

It is understood a recall of Mr Shah’s patients was recommended by the RCS.

Professor David Loughton, chief executive of Walsall Healthcare NHS Trust, said: “We want to offer our sincere apologies to those patients who have been affected as a result of having surgery by Mr Shah and we are contacting those involved to support them wherever we can, and update them throughout this process.

“I would also like to reassure patients who have been contacted that we are doing all we can, as quickly as we can, to review their medical notes, to establish whether they have been adversely affected by this particular complex surgery.”

Prof Loughton said the trust will review each case in detail, but warned “this will take some time”. He added: “I can promise findings will be fully shared with individual patients as well as with the public and relevant regulators in line with our policy of openness and transparency.”

Mr Shah has not practised at Spire Little Aston since March 2020, a Spire Healthcare spokesman said.

“We have liaised closely with the Walsall Healthcare NHS Trust throughout their review of his practice, and continue to do so,” added the spokesman.

“We are reviewing whether we need to contact and offer support to patients who had particular treatments with Mr Shah at Spire.”