Review Detail

Surgeons 29710
Schaarschmidt ruined my chest
Overall rating 
 
2.9
Ease of Correspondence with Doctor 
 
1.0
Doctor's Friendliness and Courtesy 
 
4.0
Clarity of Doctor's Explanations 
 
4.0
Accuracy of Doctor's Predictions 
 
1.0
Doctor's Apparent Knowledge of Procedure 
 
7.0
Doctor's Availability During Recovery 
 
1.0
Rate Your Cosmetic Outcome 
 
4.5
Would Recommend to Others 
 
0.5
I got in touch with Dr. Schaarschmidt after I had done a modified ravitch procedure which resulted in aesthetical and minor fysical complications. The upper part of my chest was still caved in, as wel as a small dent on the right side. During examination he was very confident that he could fix all the problems and convinced me to get a redo surgery as soon as possible because if I wasn't I was going to have major complications later on. No scans were made, he said he didn't need to see them. I arrived in the hospital a day before surgery, as I live in Belgium, not Germany. Surgery was due the next day at 9 am. I came there by myself, had no one with me. 90 % of the nurses didn't speak English. On the day of the surgery, they made me wait until 5 pm, I had to stay sober, nobody seemed to know when the surgery was actually going to happen. Finally they took me to the OR where I had to wait another hour on the surgery bed, literally stressing for my live. They had to puncture my spinal cord three times for the epidural because they didn't do it right. Finally when the doctor was about to get in, the nurse came and get me and told me the doctor already went home and the surgery would continue tomorrow. Again surgery was scheduled at 9 am. Again they kept me waiting until 3 pm. After surgery, I woke up with excruciating pain. They put me in the mid-care unit, in the children section for some reason, in the same room with a newborn crying baby. I asked to be put in another room, they said they didn't have any, obviously I couldn't do a thing, I couldn't even walk. I stayed there for 3 days barely slept because of the pain and the ongoing crying baby. until they moved me to another room. In the end I stayed in the hospital for 12 days. I got 2 new scars, he didn't reopen the old ones like Dr Schaarschmidt said, both are around 15 cm long. But the worst part, he didn't even fix half of the issues he assured me he would fix. On confronting him during the sole time I saw him during those 12 days he said it only looked like that and it would get better once it healed. Of course it didn't, it got worse. A lot worse. I have to admit, the upper part of my chest was very well done, it looked much better than before, the dent was gone for the most part, it looked natural. The dent on the right side on the other hand got bigger. During a full year the lower bar of the 2 he inserted caused a lot of pain, especially during movement, but basically all the time. This took a high toll on my social life and had a big psychological impact. Upon check up Schaarschmidt's first thought was to remove the bars. I asked if it was a possibility that te bar was poorly placed hence causing the pain and if it was possible to replace it with another more well placed bar. I didn't want to come all that way, have three surgeries just to remove the bars after a year so my chest could possibly cave in again. Dr Schaarschmidt said that replaceing the bar could indeed fix the pain caused by it. On year post my third pectus surgery, first one with Dr Schaarschmidt, I got another surgery performed by Schaarschmidt to replace the lower bar. He promised me he would fix the issues he didn't fix the first time. Guess what, same scenario happend again. On the day of the surgery they kept me waiting a full day to tell me the surgery would be postponed to the next day. The surgery took place, again I woke up with a lot of pain, I was coughing blood. No children mid-care this time. The nurses again didn't speak English and were very rude. The beds looked like they were from the 80's, very bad wi-fi which you had to pay for, I didn't feel comfortable at all. I had to stay in the hospital for 10 days. I was in a lot of pain and my chest didn't feel right from the beginning. When I asked the staff if I could see the doctor they always said he would come tomorrow, then it was after the weekend. After waiting for a week or so, they told me he went on a holiday. Without even telling me. I felt really abandoned and lost. There were some other doctors for checkups, but they didn't have the same knowledge about my situation. There was one doctor who was there during surgery who told me the old lower bar was sticking out several centimeters to the side, that's what caused the pain. None of the issues Dr. Schaarschmidt was supposed to fix the first and now the second time were fixed. the coming year I was in an even greater discomfort and pain caused by the lower bar. I had to drop out of University. One year after my Fourth, second with Schaarschmidt, surgery I got the bars taken out by him. And yet again on the day of the surgery he kept me waiting an additional day. More so a patient from New-zealand, who also came in for bar removal, arrived in the hospital on the day my surgery was initially scheduled. He got surgery the next day before me, what he hell? He payed the surgery out of his pocket. Mine was mostly covered by my insurance.It was a couple of thousand euro's cheaper than his. Apparently Dr Schaarschmidt asks more money when you pay for the surgery your self. Again he promised me he would fix the remaining issues I had. For the remaining dent on the right he would either 'undent' it from the inside while removing the bars' (I can't imagine how he would have done that) or he would put a small vertical bar were the dent is. I told him to fix it at all cost because the dent was causing pain and discomfort. I told him explicably to put in the small bar. He said he would. When I woke up, I had slim to no pain. Of course he didn't insert the small vertical bar. The dent on the right remained and got even bigger. I had to stay in the hospital for 5 days. I saw him in his office on the last day after waiting hours in the hallway. I asked him why he didn't insert the small vertical bar like he was going to. He said he didn't think it was necessary and that it was only a small dent. Then he showed me some pictures of his most severe cases and said mine was fine. I felt mad, sad, disappointed. I healed quite quickly. The pain and discomfort from the lower bar was gone. I still had pain and discomfort on the dent on the right side. My chest caved in a little bit. I had physical therapy on a weekly basis and after a year I started lifting weights. That really helped reducing the pain a lot. Instead of 5 days a week with pain, after some months of going to the gym 3 times a week, got me to 1 or 2 days a week with pain. I've been doing that for a year and a half now. When I don't hit the gym for a couple of days my chest starts to hurt more. So in a way it's a good motivation, and a pleasant side effect is that I look good. It took me some time to write this review. I wanted to wait things out, see how it would evolve. We are now nearly 3 years after my bars were removed. This whole journey of 6 surgeries was horrifying and traumatic. I'm still experiencing more pain and discomfort than I ever had before my very first surgery. I think Schaarschimdt can deliver good results, but with me, except from the upper chest on which I think he did a really good job, in overal experience he did not. I am very very disappointed in how he communicated, how he was so convinced and promised he would fix all the issues and when he didn't he merely said it wasn't necessary anymore and that there were more severe cases than me. Come on. He ignored my e-mails I send him after bar removal, asking him tips on what to do. I wonder how long I am going to be able to bare this discomfort in my chest. I contacted Dr Pilegaard and Dr Jaroszewski right after my bar removal. Pilegaard said he didn't want to perform surgey because he wans't sure if he could help me, on which I appreciate his honesty. Dr Jaroszewski said she couldn't help me. So yeah, for now with going to the gym I can suppress most of the pain, but sometimes I wonder if there is a future for me where I can be completely pain free. If you're getting into this, get a good doctor, and ask yourself if you need surgery in the first place. I would recommend seeing Dr Pilegaard in Denmark, his results look stunning, hospital seemed really nice, and he is a genuine guy. I wish you all the best luck.

Briek

Your Pectus Information

Condition
Pectus Excavatum
Pre-Surgery Haller Index
5.2
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