Doctor patted patient’s bottom and failed to gain surgery consent, tribunal told
A doctor patted the bottom of a female patient in a hospital lift and later told her husband to “go home and fill her up”, a medical tribunal has heard.
Consultant Dr Anthony Dixon (pictured) is said to have behaved inappropriately more than a week after he performed colorectal surgery on the woman.
She was allegedly in “severe pain” after earlier undergoing a revision of a procedure known as LVMR (laparoscopic ventral mesh rectopexy).
In May 2022, North Bristol NHS Trust admitted more than 200 patients had been given unnecessary bowel operations by Dr Dixon.
A review found dozens of people suffered harm after the consultant gave them pelvic floor surgery using artificial mesh, a technique he had pioneered.
On Tuesday, Dr Dixon appeared at a Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service hearing in Manchester where he is accused of misconduct in relation to six patients.
He worked at the trust’s Southmead Hospital and also at the private Spire Hospital in the city during the time of the allegations between 2010 and 2016.
The tribunal was told that a woman, known as Patient B, attended Spire Hospital in July 2016 for revision of a LVMR procedure.
Chloe Fairley, for the General Medical Council (GMC), said following the operation that Dr Dixon made remarks that he “could have made her pregnant on the operating table”.
Patient B was discharged four days after surgery but returned with her husband days later in “severe pain”.
Ms Fairley said when Dr Dixon arrived and saw them, he called Patient B “a drama queen” and added: “It can’t be all that bad.”
The woman’s husband said the doctor was “dismissive” of her complaints and he was alarmed by the words he used, the tribunal heard.
Ms Fairley said: “After a few hours, Patient B recovered sufficiently for her pain to be managed and for her to return home.
“As she entered the lift she said Dr Dixon patted her on the bottom and this was witnessed by her husband.
“During the final consultation with Dr Dixon, he asked whether they were having sex and they said they were not, and said it was painful after the first procedure.
“He told Patient B’s husband to go home and fill her up.”
Dr Dixon is said to have failed to ensure the procedure was clinically indicated in that he did not arrange all necessary tests and investigations beforehand.
He also allegedly did not obtain informed consent and failed to provide adequate post-operative care.
The doctor is also accused of inappropriate communications with another patient in May 2013. He is said to have “consistently interrupted” Patient D during a consultation as he tried to answer questions and at one pointed turned to the man’s wife and said, words to the effect, “don’t you feel like strangling him?”.
In December 2015, he is said to have performed an inadequate stapled haemorrhoidectomy on a woman without informed consent.
The tribunal was told Patient F had not wanted stapling, or anything permanent, left in her body.
She only discovered stapling had in fact been inserted when she underwent an MRI scan some 10 weeks after the operation which had left her in pain and also incontinent.
Ms Fairley said Dr Dixon’s response was that she was “lucky he had performed the procedure” and he dismissed her complaints.
It is also said that Dr Dixon’s professional performance was deemed as unacceptable by independent GMC assessors in November and December 2018.
His assessment and clinical management of pelvic floor patients was said to be below standard, as was his working relationships with colleagues, especially his “disrespectful” behaviour to junior colleagues.
Dr Dixon denies misconduct.
The hearing is scheduled to last until late November.
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