The compelling defense of Dr. Charlie Teo that all his haters must read – because he was forced to leave the country to continue his work.

The compelling defense of Dr. Charlie Teo that all his haters must read - because he was forced to leave the country to continue his work.

Despite being found guilty of unsavory conduct, Dr. Charlie Teo’s supporters remain steadfast in their commitment to fight for the embattled neurosurgeon.

A recent ruling by the Professional Standards Committee concluded that surgery performed by Dr Teo had resulted in ‘disastrous’ results, prompting restrictions on his medical registration.

Committee investigation Dr. Teor’s failure to adequately communicate the true risks involved in his ‘experimental’ surgery has been highlighted, and he has been found to have acted unethically by not obtaining informed consent from his patients before surgery.

The decision effectively banned him from working in Australia and forced him to move to China – where he was allowed to work in hospitals there.

Charlie Teo said he will undergo brain surgery in China after the adverse results against him in Australia

‘I’ve been crucified here, it doesn’t seem to have affected their decision, so I’m going to go over there and check the facilities, to make sure they’re OK, they’ve bought the latest MRI for me,’ he said. The Daily Telegraph.

But many of his former patients have spoken out in the surgeon’s defense with a compelling message for his detractors, saying they are well aware of the risks of surgery, and should be allowed to make Dr Teo’s choice to operate on them.

‘Thanks Charlie for fixing me up. I will always be grateful to you. It is a big loss for Australia. To the critics out there, this is my life, my money, my choice, so bugger off,’ said one.

Another added: ‘I will always be grateful to you for saving my life. I have felt nothing but genuine concern, support, joy and love from you. I had a choice and I made a fully informed decision. I choose Dr. Charlie every time!’

This sentiment was also expressed in an article titled ‘Cutting the Tall Poppy: Dr Charlie Teo’ by Ethan Davies, who said that the real victims of ‘witch hunts’ are patients who would die without a surgeon who respects their wishes and attempts surgery.

‘No one forces brain surgery with Dr Charlie Teo. People are free to get second opinions and explore the market,’ he wrote.

‘We need to support medical professionals who are willing to challenge widespread dogma to save lives. No one else will.’

Dr. Teo operated on Perth mother-of-two T’Ann Steele’s brain after she was diagnosed with brain cancer six years ago.

She posted a lengthy tribute to the neurosurgeon on Facebook thanking him for saving her life, saying: ‘I choose Dr Charlie every time’.

Ms Steele sought the opinions of five neurosurgeons to discuss her surgical options, with the first doctor she referred to as ‘the best in Perth’.

She said the doctor was ‘rude, dismissive, cold and shrugged her shoulders’ after hearing she had two young children, both under five.

The surgeon said he would do the surgery part before handing it over to someone else and told him he had to make a quick decision as he was going on vacation.

‘And then I met Dr Charlie Teo,’ Ms Steele wrote.

Former patients of Charlie Teo (pictured centre) have vowed to continue advocating for the embattled neurosurgeon after he was found guilty of misconduct.

Dr Teo (right) performed brain surgery on Perth mother-of-two Ta’Ann Steele (left) six years ago after she was diagnosed with brain cancer.

Charlie took the time to explain everything. All the details, all the risks, all the options and all my questions answered.

‘He swore but I was not displeased. He wore jeans and so did I. He gave me hope, he gave my family hope.

‘He took a weight off my shoulders. He was warm, genuine and compassionate. Nothing was hidden. It was my choice and I would not hesitate to choose Charlie again for me or my loved ones.

‘Undoubtedly, I am here today living my best life only because of him.’

Ms. Steele said she understood why the neurosurgeon had begun to gather enemies who would claim he had acted unethically.

Last week a Professional Standards Committee found that surgeries performed by Dr Teor had ‘catastrophic’ results and imposed restrictions on his registration.

Elizabeth McIntosh, who was diagnosed with Adult Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL) at the age of two, met Dr Teo when an MRI revealed several meningiomas in her brain, caused by radiation she had received as a child.

Dr. Teo performed several complex surgeries on Ms. McIntosh’s optic nerve that saved her growing vision from further deterioration.

Between 2010 and 2015 he underwent five surgeries to remove 31 meningiomas and allowed ‘beautiful, wise’ Dr Teo to ‘live life again’.

‘Charlie’s skills involve precise, delicate movements in a small area using his dexterous hands,’ Ms McIntosh wrote.

‘Charlie is a truly gifted person and always showed us the utmost respect, explained the risks and procedures involved, gave us choices and didn’t charge us for certain procedures and advice.’

Katie Maul said Dr. Teo operated on her youngest son five times after he was diagnosed with brain cancer and was charged for only one operation.

‘He bought us such great quality time,’ she said.

‘But every surgery was a struggle and always difficult for me. I was doing what was best for my son and I knew Charlie was doing the same.

He never gave false hope! But he gave hope and two more wonderful years with my child.’

When her son died eight months ago, Ms Maul said just hours later Dr Teo emailed his condolences to the family.

‘You can’t tell me that many medical practitioners would do that,’ she said.

The neurosurgeon revealed that he has been given special privileges in China and will take his work to hospitals there, in Europe and parts of Southeast Asia.

A professional standards committee last week found the ‘disastrous’ results of the surgery carried out by Dr Teor and imposed restrictions on his registration.

The HCCC investigated complaints relating to two patients – referred to as Patient A and Patient B – who had been diagnosed with terminal brain tumors with catastrophic outcomes.

No patient regained consciousness after surgery in 2018 and 2019 at Sydney’s Prince of Wales Private Hospital.

During an eight-day hearing before the Professional Standards Committee in March, Dr Teo faced allegations of misleading patients, conducting dangerous surgeries and failing to properly inform them or their families of the risks involved.

The standards committee found that surgeons decided to operate on two patients ‘where the risk of surgery outweighed any potential benefit’.

The committee found that he did not obtain informed consent from any of the women before surgery, charged an improper fee of $35,000 and spoke inappropriately with patients and their families.

In its 112-page decision, the committee concluded that Dr Teo ‘did not exercise appropriate judgement’ in performing what was deemed a ‘high risk and inappropriate’ surgery on the 41-year-old Perth woman.

‘Surgery in these circumstances is not recommended or carried out by a majority of physician peers or by a responsible minority of surgeons,’ it read.

‘The procedure was not supported by the literature (and) the practitioner in his professional capacity had an overriding ethical responsibility to refuse surgery.’

The committee found that Dr Teo’s attitude and rationale for conducting the surgery was ‘sufficiently empirical’ and was the type of operation that should be carried out in a clinical trial setting or subject to other ethical scrutiny.

While operating on a 66-year-old patient, he performed a right frontal lobectomy instead of resection of the tumor ‘which was different from what was recommended’.

Surgery ultimately ‘leads to unnecessary and excessive removal of the normally functioning brain’.

During the consultation with the woman, Dr Teo used inappropriate language, telling the patient: ‘If this operation is not done by Tuesday, you will be dead by Friday’.

The woman was also told: ‘What are you crying about? I’m here to fix you, you should be happy’ and ‘Best way to die of a brain tumor’.

While the woman was unconscious and in the presence of her family, Dr Teo also allegedly slapped her across the face.

Dr Teo admitted during the hearing that his actions were responsible for the women’s poor outcomes, but rejected any suggestion of negligence.

‘I couldn’t save lives that I know I can save,’ he said.

Dr. Teo must obtain a written statement from a medical council-approved neurosurgeon to assist him in performing recurrent malignant intracranial tumor and brain stem tumor surgical procedures.

“If the written statement does not support Professor Teo to perform the procedure(s), he cannot perform the surgery,” the decision said on Wednesday.

The neurosurgeon revealed that he has been given special privileges in China and will take his work to hospitals there, in Europe and parts of Southeast Asia.

Some of his former patients are urging friends and family to walk across the Harbor Bridge with the neurosurgeon on Sept. 17.

The Life and Times of Celebrity Surgeon Charlie Teo

December 24, 1957 – Charlie Teo is born in Sydney, the son of Chinese-Singaporean immigrants.

1981 – Graduated from the University of Sydney and studied at the elite Scots College in Sydney with a Bachelor of Medicine and a Bachelor of Medicine in Sydney.

From 1982 – Sidney worked in general neurosurgery at the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital in Dallas, Texas and Arkansas before moving to the US for 10 years, where he became Associate Professor of Neurosurgery and Chief of Pediatric Neurosurgery.

1990 – Teo returned to Australia to work at the Prince of Wales Hospital in Sydney and established the Cure Brain Cancer Foundation and the Charlie Teo Foundation.

2000 – His fame spread and he became a regular on TV and on the social pages of newspapers

2011 – Awarded Member of the Order of Australia for services to medicine as a neurosurgeon

Charlie Teo returned to Australia in the 90s to work at the Prince of Wales Hospital in Sydney and founded the Cure Brain Cancer Foundation and the Charlie Teo Foundation.

2019 – Urologist Henry Wu expresses concern about Mr Teo’s work and the number of GoFundMe campaigns he has run to raise money for surgery, sparking a series of newspaper articles, TV investigations and complaints.

2021 – The NSW Medical Council held a special hearing on Mr Teo which banned him from carrying out the operation without special written approval from an experienced neurosurgeon, which he said he could not obtain due to strict restrictions on approving surgeons.

August 2021 – The Healthcare Complaints Commission opens an investigation into two more complaints

September 2022 – HCCC hearing due but postponed

October 2022 – Three new charges against Mr Teo are made to the HCCC

February 13, 2023 – Dr Teo faces HCCC on five charges

July 12, 2023 – He was found guilty of unsatisfactory professional conduct.


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