California spine surgeon sues ASC

Hooman Melamed, MD, a California-based spine surgeon, filed a lawsuit against Marina Del Rey, Calif.-based Diagnostic and Interventional Surgical Center, where he previously was an owner, and HOI ASC Holdings.

In the complaint, filed Jan. 31, Dr. Melamed alleges:

1. Another surgeon at the center routinely performed concurrent surgeries and patients were harmed as a result.

2. Other physicians and surgeons at the center performed unnecessary procedures or more aggressive procedures than were medically necessary.

3. There was a high rate of revision surgeries at the center due to misplaced screws.

4. A nurse was allowed to continue participating in surgical procedures after multiple mistakes and complaints were raised with the ASC's leadership.

5. A physician assistant exposed the posterior spine while left unsupervised with the patient.

Dr. Melamed said he lodged multiple complaints and grievances with the ASC's medical director on the issues outlined in the lawsuit. Dr. Melamed said his working environment became "hostile" after lodging his complaints, and he asked to have his investment returned. His medical staff privileges were terminated May 16, 2022.

Dr. Melamed is seeking general damages of $1.87 million — the amount of his initial investment in the center — or more.

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