The Ottawa Hospital Cancer Centre is at the center of a
storm after it emerged that many skin cancer patients received the wrong dosage
of radiation because of a mis-calculation.
Between November 2004 and November 2007, some 326
patients received 17 percent less dosage for skin cancer. "We regret what
happened and don't want to create a lot of anxiety and worry," said Dr.
Chris Carruthers, chief of the medical staff at the Ottawa Hospital.
"However, the patients ... should be monitored and we should watch them to
see if the underdosing really had any effect over time."
Typically these cancers are successfully treated by
radiation and do not require aggressive treatment unlike melanomas. It is also
reported that patients with aggressive skin cancers were not affected.
Carruthers said that
the error occurred in October 2004 and was discovered in November 2007. An
internal review was conducted and hence the late disclosure of the problem, he