Indiana cardiologist sued by former patients

Two former patients claim Dr. Arvind Ghandi performed unnecessary surgeries. (WLS)
May 8, 2014 6:41:10 AM PDT
A northwest Indiana cardiologist is accused of performing unnecessary surgeries on patients.

Two people are now taking him to court.

Ray Kammer and Gloria Sargent have suffered from heart problems for years. Both were referred to Dr. Arvind Gandhi, a longtime cardiologist who practices at this Munster, Ind. office and performs procedures at Munster Community Hospital.

When Kammer was 25-years-old, he says Dr. Gandhi strongly encouraged him to get an implant cardiac defibrillator, a device similar to a pacemaker. Despite getting a second opinion that discouraged the surgery, Kammer went ahead with it.

"When you have a doctor you trust and they are looking you in the eye, he mentions you can run the risk of dying at 25 that is pretty intimidating," Kammer said.

Kammer had the surgery seven years ago. Since then, he says several doctors have told him his condition could have been treated with medication rather than an implant. Gloria Sargent says Dr. Gandhi gave her an upgraded defibrillator, which she alleges was also not necessary.

"He hurt me tremendously and I don't want him to do this to anyone else," Sargent said.

Both Sargent and Kammer have filed medical malpractice lawsuits against Gandhi and the Munster Community Hospital.

"Through the journey of their post implantation care," said attorney Barry Rooth, "they have learned consistently neither of them have needed the procedures."

Attorneys say an investigation by the Indiana Medical Review Board also concluded the implants were unnecessary. However, the board also said there was no long term damage or harm. Kammer and Sargent's lawyers say because implant surgeries are very lucrative, they believe there are more victims out there.

"Dr. Gandhi is in the top 20 of all cardiologists in the nation with respect to Medicare compensation," said attorney David Cutshaw.

Dr. Gandhi's attorney would not comment on pending litigation. The Munster Community Hospital says it there is no basis to the allegations against the hospital. A spokesperson also said the hospital cannot comment about allegations made against a physician in their community.

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