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Octomom's fertility doctor has license revoked

LOS ANGELES (AP) -- California medical officials revoked the license of the fertility doctor who helped ``Octomom'' Nadya Suleman become the mother of 14 children through repeated in vitro treatments, according to a decision made public Wednesday.

Michael Kamrava (AP-Yonhap News)
Michael Kamrava (AP-Yonhap News)


The Medical Board of California said it was necessary to revoke Dr. Michael Kamrava's license to protect the public. The revocation takes effect July 1.

The Beverly Hills fertility doctor has acknowledged implanting 12 embryos into Suleman prior to the pregnancy that produced her octuplets. It was six times the norm for a woman her age.

That was a mistake, according to the board.

``While the evidence did not establish (Kamrava) as a maverick or deviant physician, oblivious to standards of care in IVF practice, it certainly demonstrated that he did not exercise sound judgment in the transfer of twelve embryos to (Suleman),'' the board said in its 45-page decision.

Since Suleman's octuplets were born in January 2009, the medical community and public have puzzled over how a doctor could have implanted so many embryos into a patient and how the babies were carried to premature birth.

In practice, fertility doctors avoid mega-births, as high number multiple births are sometimes called, because the process can put the mother at risk for serious complications and death. Crowding in a mother's uterus could also result in premature birth, cerebral palsy, developmental delays or other health problems for the babies.

To date, Suleman's octuplets are the world's longest surviving set.

Kamrava's lawyer Henry Fenton did not return phone calls seeking comment.

With a tearful apology, Kamrava testified at his hearing last year that he implanted Suleman with 12 embryos because she consented to undergoing fetal reduction if too many of the babies became viable.

Kamrava said that months passed after the treatment, and he never heard from her, despite efforts to contact her. He says he only heard from Suleman again after the babies were born.

The state also found that Kamrava was negligent in the care of two other patients _  a major factor in the decision to revoke his license.

``This is not a one-patient case or a two-patient case; it is a three-patient case and the established causes of discipline include repeated negligent acts,'' the board decision reads.

Kamrava was found to have implanted seven embryos in a 48-year-old patient, resulting in quadruplets. One fetus died before birth.

Kamrava said at his hearing that he recommended four embryos be implanted, but he implanted seven because the patient insisted.

In another case, Kamrava went ahead with in vitro fertilization after tests detected atypical cells, which can indicate the presence of a tumor. The patient was later diagnosed with stage-three cancer and had to have her uterus and ovaries removed before undergoing chemotherapy.

Kamrava said he should have referred her to a gynecological oncologist but simultaneous to her treatment, news broke about Suleman's octuplets and he became too distracted to follow up the patient's care.

In February, a judge recommended the board put Kamrava on five years of probation, but the ultimate licensing decision belonged to the board. Citing negative publicity surrounding Suleman's case, the judge had said it was unlikely Kamrava would make similar mistakes again.

The board ``adamantly'' disagreed with that assessment, saying the doctor had already used bad press as an excuse for failing to care properly for the fertility patient who should have been referred to a cancer specialist.

``Accordingly, the board is not persuaded that relying on the public or the media to fulfill or supplement the board's public protection role is sound policy,'' the decision reads.

 

(한글기사)

美 여덟쌍둥이 '옥토맘' 시술의사 면허취소

지난 2009년 미국에서 체외수정으로 여덟 쌍둥이를 낳게 한 의사가 환자보호 의무를 소홀히 했다는 이유로 결국 의사면허를 취소당했다 .

캘리포니아주(州) 의료위원회는 1일 여덟 쌍둥이를 낳아 '옥토맘'이라고 불리는 나디아 슐먼(35)의 체외수정 시술 의사 마이클 캄라바의 면허를 내달 1일자로  취소 한다고 밝혔다.

의료위원회는 "캄라바가 시험관 시술 과정에서 슐먼에게 12개의 배아를 주입한 사실을 인정했다"면서 이는 산모의 건강을 고려하지 않은 실수였다고 지적했다.

체외수정 시술의사들은 통상적으로 한꺼번에 많은 수정란이 생길 경우 자궁의 공간이 좁아져 미숙아를 출산하거나 아기에게 뇌성마비, 발달장애 등을 초래할 수 있어 많은 배아를 동시에 주입하는 것을 피하고 있다.

캄라바는 의료위원회가 소집한 청문회에서 산모의 동의를 거쳤다고  주장하면서 도 12개의 배아를 주입한 것은 인정했으며 시술 이후 산모와 연락을 제대로 취하지 못했다며 환자 관리에 소홀했음을 사실상 시인했다.

의료위원회 측은 이와 별도로 캄라바가 네 쌍둥이를 출산한 48세 여성의 시험관 시술과정에서 7개의 배아를 시술한 사실도 확인했다.

또 캄라바가 또 다른 산모에게서 종양으로 발전할 수 있는 비정형 세포를  발견 하고서도 암 치료를 권하지 않고 시험관 시술을 강행, 결국 이 여성이 자궁과  난소 를 들어내야 하는 상황으로 몰고 간 사실도 드러났다.

이번 면허취소 결정은 지난해 10월 캘리포니아주 검찰이 의료당국에 캄라바에 대한 의사 면허 취소를 요청함에 따라 이뤄진 것이다.

지난 2009년 슐먼은 이미 자녀 6명이 있는데도 체외수정으로 여덟쌍둥이를 출산 한 소식은 '옥토맘'이란 신조어가 생길 정도로 미국 전역에서 큰 화제를 몰고 왔다.

그러나 '싱글맘'인 슐먼은 14명의 아이를 키워야 하는 처지가 돼 집을  압류당 할 위기에 처할 정도로 생활고에 시달리고 있는 것으로 알려졌다.

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