Malpractice News

February 8, 2012

Malpractice Complaints Go Unlisted

The Minnesota Board of Medical Practice denied the request of the News Tribune to release “any and all documents containing or relating to complaints made to them regarding former Duluth neurosurgeon Stefan Joseph Konasiewicz, M.D.

The request was made in November of 2006 but the board cited state privacy statutes.  The board would not confirm or deny that any complaints had been filed against Konasiewicz even though Ellen Abare of Duluth had filed a claim in 2003 and had received a settlement.  Abare claimed that the neurosurgeon had left her permanently disabled when she went to him for carpal tunnel syndrome and he removed a piece of nerve from her right wrist.

Konasiewicz had been sued nine times in Minnesota. Two of those cases allege that he was responsible for the death of his patients and only one settlement amount was made public.  Diane Gaumgardner’s family won approximately $355,000.  Fred, her husband, said “I just wanted (Konasiewicz) stopped.”

Konasiewicz was finally sanctioned by the Minnesota Board of Medical Practice in 2010 after a St. Louis County medical examiner, Don Kundel wrote a letter requesting that the board seek an investigation to ascertain whether “Dr. Konasiewicz is incompetent or reckless.” 

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