In 2006, the Michigan Veterinary board filed two administrative complaints against Comprehensive Animal Clinic's (Lansing, Michigan) owner and veterinarian, Abolarin Agbona. In both cases Agbona was found by the Board to have committed acts of negligence and substandard care; in one of these cases the "unsanitary conditions" of Comprehensive Animal Clinic were found to violate public health code.
Case 1: The Case of Zippy the Cat
The Board's administrative complaint states the following:
"On March 23, 2005, at approximately 8:00 p.m., a feline named Zippy presented to [Agbona], who diagnosed Zippy with urinary blockage. [Agbona's] documentation concerning his treatment of Zippy was inadequate. Specifically, Zippy's medical records showed no indication of physical examination findings, history and route of medications administered. The medical records also lacked a summary of x-ray findings, urinalysis results, or procedures performed."
"On March 25, 2005, when Zippy was picked up from the clinic by its [sic] owner, Zippy was covered in urine and feces. Thereafter, Zippy continued to experience problems urinating and the owner sought treatment for Zippy from another veterinarian."
"On September 14, 2005, Complainant's investigator conducted an inspection of [Agbona's] clinic and found that [Agbona] failed to store controlled substances in a securely locked cabinet or maintain an accurate inventory of controlled substances. Complainant's investigator also noted a strong odor of urine and feces upon entering the clinic, and found uncapped needles and syringes on hallway countertops and overflowing Sharp's containers. Complainant's investigator further found that the refrigerator/freezer in the clinic stored medications, but also contained foods intended for human consumption."
The Board found that Agbona's conduct "evidences a violation of general duty, consisting of negligence or failure to exercise due care, including negligent delegation to or supervision of employees or other individuals . . . [and] evidences a departure from, or failure to conform to, minimal standards of acceptable and prevailing practice for the health profession . . . " They also found that "the unsanitary conditions of [Agbona's clinic]" violated the public health code.
Case 2: The Case of Koda the Ferman Shepherd
(Do you think they mean GERMAN shepherd? The Board document definitely says "Ferman . . ." Wow, brilliant . . . )
The Board document states that:
"On February 8, 2006, at approximately 10:30 p.m., a Ferman Shepard [sic] named Koda presented to [Agbona] on an emergency basis with symptoms of "bloat."
"On February 8 and 9, 2006, [Agbona] provided substandard treatment to Koda, and [his] documentation concerning his treatment of Koda was inadequate to determine the seriousness of the dog's condition. Specifically, [Agbona's] documentation lacked any mention of fluid therapy, electrolytes, or acid-base evaluations in the medical records. [Agbona's] x-ray of Koda was of poor technial quality so as to render it totally useless, and he failed to refer Koda to another veterinarian. Furthermore, [Agbona] failed to document the results of a gastric lavage." (Gastric lavage meaning pumping out the stomach -- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gastric_lavage.)
"On February 9, 2006, Koda's condition continued to deteriorate and the dog's owners sought treatment for Koda with another veterinarian, who diagnosed Koda with gastric-dilation/volvulus (GVD)" (GVD is bloat.)
The Board found that Agbona's conduct "evidences a violation of general duty, consisting of negligence or failure to exercise due care, including negligent delegation to or supervision of employees or other individuals . . ." and that Agbona's conduct "evidences a departure from, or failure to conform to, minimal standards of acceptable and prevailing practice for the health profession . . ."
So, could the failure to diagnose and properly treat Koda for bloat have cost him his life?
It could have, although we do not know whether or not it did, because the board document doesn't say what happened to Koda.
But according to this website (http://www.allpetsmacomb.com/emergencies.html):
"Gastric dilatation volvulus (GDV) or "bloat" is a condition in which the stomach
enlarges with gas and flips/rotates on itself. This results in an increasing amount
of gas that cannot be released from the stomach, respiratory compromise, shock, and
death. Any dog with rapidly increasing abdominal size, respiratory difficulty, and
vomiting or attempted vomiting, should be examined by a veterinarian immediately. . .
"Rapid diagnosis and treatment is essential to a successful outcome.
IV fluids, medication for shock, and surgery to relieve the torsion and empty the gas are necessary for dogs with GDV."
Another website (http://www.animalemergencyservices.com/Canine_Conditions.aspx) says:
"[Bloat]is a life-threatening condition. . . Failure to rapidly treat this condition will result in your pet’s death."
I know if I lived in Michigan, I would NEVER darken the doorstep of "Comprehensive Animal Clinic" or any other place this vet ever worked!