Surgeon Accused of Fake Surgeries

Another lawsuit against Panos describes how he performed rotator cuff surgery on a patient's shoulder even though her X-ray was clean, yet he ignored a severely fractured collarbone, Wisell said.

Numerous plaintiffs claim Panos didn't cement joint replacements together properly or used the wrong components to repair a joint, Wisell added.

Brown said that Panos used his patients like human cash registers, scheduling as many as 22 surgeries a day. The average orthopedic surgeon typically schedules no more than 32 procedures a month, according to American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons statistics.

McNamee said the bills for her mother's care were more than $50,000. She also received a bill from Mid Hudson for her mother's post-operative follow up -- more than two years after her mother had passed away.

"We lost her because someone was looking to make money on her," McNamee said. "He took an oath to care for people not to kill people and cover it up."

Wisell, who referred to Panos as "The Hudson Valley Hack," agreed that Panos was after money. He also said he is certain other medical professionals knew Panos was scheduling too many surgeries and should have spoken up.

"I'm a million percent sure that the proper safeguards were put in place but they were completely ignored," Wisell said. "His employers and colleagues had to know what he was doing but there was too much money at stake so they looked the other way."

Doctor Blasted For 'Ghetto Booty' Diagnosis

Both Brown and Wisell noted that clients with potential cases against Panos began flooding their offices with calls immediately after journalist Sarah Bradshaw wrote about the first few lawsuits for the Poughkeepsie Journal in September 2010. Bradshaw said she was tipped off to the litigation from an anonymous source.

Panos was terminated from his employer, Mid Hudson Medical Group, in 2011, Brown said.

Panos is currently licensed to practice in New York State and the New York State Office of Medical Conduct does not list him in its database of professional misconduct and physician discipline. The Medical Conduct Office did not immediately have an answer for why Panos was not in its system.

Panos appeared to be blogging and maintaining active Facebook page and Twitter accounts until at least July 2012.

In one blog post, he wrote that a patient once referred to him as a "21st century Marcus Welby," and that he is, "in fact, humanizing medical care and treatment." In another post, he stressed the importance of pre-operative care for better patient outcomes.

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