B.C. woman's breast cancer missed in mammogram
An investigation into questionable medical scans in B.C. could be expanded to include mammograms now that another cancer patient has come forward with her story of a missed diagnosis.
St. Joseph's Hospital in Comox is promising to refer any cases of misread mammograms to a provincial investigation after hearing the story of breast cancer patient Florence Smith.
"If we know about cases, we'll refer cases," hospital president Mike Pontus said.
Staff working on the investigation told CTV News they will be happy to look into questionable mammograms as part of their review of scans overseen by three doctors.
Smith's saga began in 2004, when she received good news from St. Joseph's Hospital in Comox -- her mammogram results had come back cancer-free.
But her family doctor asked her to get tested again at a different hospital in Campbell River. She made a visit about a year later, and doctors discovered two malignant tumours that would require surgery and two years of chemotherapy.
"It's a shame. It's a real shame. I lost two years of my life fighting a very serious cancer and maybe I wouldn't have had to if they would have caught it earlier," Smith told CTV News.
Her documents don't show which Comox radiologist examined her mammogram. A doctor at St. Joseph's, Dr. Jose Zanbilowicz, is one of three at the centre of the provincial probe.
Smith's cancer is now in remission, but she welcomes the chance to find out more.
"We've got to have answers now. Somehow or other, we've got to have closure. What has happened? Who's been playing with our lives?" she said.
With a report from CTV British Columbia's Jon Woodward