Complaint: I first met Dr. Harvey Wichman nearly 30 years ago. I had broken my pelvis in a car wreck a couple years earlier and developed severe arthritis. My left hip was in bad shape. I walked with a cane and suffered extreme pain. Dr. Wichman suggested a hip replacement to which I agreed. The surgery went extremely well. I was on crutches for a few weeks and then a cane and then I walked on my own. The pain level I had felt mostly disappeared. I felt great. I went back to work. I signed up for night school. Over the next dozen years I finished three college degrees and I worked a full time and part time job and I owned rental properties. I was doing extremely well physically and financially. All of this came to an end one fateful day. It started innocently enough. I went to see Dr. Wichman for a check up on the artificial hip he put in me. My hip felt fine. I had no pain or discomfort. Dr. Wichman told me that my artificial hip needed work. He claimed that the plastic cup in my pelvis had loosened and needed replacement. He told me the surgery would u201cbe easyu201d. He claimed he had performed hundreds of these type surgeries. He said I would u201cbe on crutches for three weeks and then back to worku201d. He decided a little later that my entire left hip needed replacement but didnu2019t explain why. I reported to Aurora Sinai hospital one early morning about 5 a.m. I walked in to the hospital on my own. No crutches or cane. I felt fine. No pain or discomfort. What a fool I was. I met Dr. Wichman in the pre operation room at the hospital. Within minutes I was asleep. The nurses woke me up about 7 p.m. I had walked into the hospital feeling fine with no pain some 14 hours before. Now I was flat on my back. I couldnu2019t move. The first thought that came to mind as I woke up was pain. My hip hurt, bad. Dr. Wichman was no where in sight. It got worse from there. I had to use a walker and wheelchair to get around. The physical therapist kept screaming at me to move around more. The pain level was increasing. The hospital food was horrible. I was getting weaker by the day. Dr. Wichman finally showed up some five days after the surgery. He was happy to see me. As I lay in bed barely able to move, Dr. Wichman told me with a smile that he had used more hardware in my hip replacement than any other hip replacement he had ever performed. He then told me he was releasing me to go home the next day and then he left. The next morning a nurse came in to see me and gave me a packet of pre-loaded syringes. She told me I was supposed to give myself anti blood clot injections every 12 hours for three days. Then she left and I was free to go. I had entered the hospital on foot a week before with no pain. Now I was leaving in a wheel chair and I was in agony. I didnu2019t realize how bad my situation was until I got home. Dr. Wichman sent me home without any assistance what so ever. I was stuck, quick literally. I was so weak I couldnu2019t stand up to prepare food. I had to sit in a wheelchair next to the refrigerator and balance a plate on my lap and make sandwiches. It took nearly a week before I had the strength to take a shower. The first few days were the worst. I was giving myself anti blood clot injections and changing the bandage on the wound. Every time I took off the bandage, dark red blood would ooze out of the wound and down my leg. The pain level was still rising. The first outpatient visit to Dr. Wichman after the surgery was the strangest. Dr. Wichman came into the exam room with the artificial hip he had removed from me in his hands. It was sealed in a plastic bag. It still had chunks of my leg bone stuck to it. Dr. Wichman told me that he had to break my leg to get that original artificial hip out. He said he was saving the hip he removed from me for his personal u201cmuseumu201d. Before I left his office he showed me a wooden cabinet that was built into the wall where he kept his collection of parts. During subsequent visits, Dr. Wichman insisted that my leg was u201call healed upu201d. The first few visits he was happy to see me and then he asked if I was glad I had the surgery. I told him no. That was not the answer he wanted to hear. The pain level was still going up. I went to round after round of physical therapy. My leg swelled up so badly I had trouble pulling my pants on. My foot swelled up to the point where I couldnu2019t wear my shoe. The pain level continued to go up even weeks after the surgery. Dr. Wichman insisted that my hip was healed. He even cut off my prescription for pain medication; he decided I didnu2019t need it anymore. The pain level was so intense I couldnu2019t sleep. I was so exhausted I had to lay in bed and close my eyes but I was in so much pain I couldnu2019t fall asleep. After much pleading on my part, Dr. Wichman relented and refilled my pain medication. Dr. Wichman told me to return to my normal routine. He wanted me to return to work three weeks after the surgery. I was still using a wheelchair and he wanted me to go back to work! A month later I forced myself out of the wheelchair onto crutches. It was several months before my leg swelling went down enough for me to wear pants. Dr. Wichman refused to extend my medical leave and insisted that I return to work which I did. Trying to work was a joke. I was still using one crutch. My foot stayed swelled up so badly I had to take my shoe off when I got to work. My cubicle at work was about a half block walk from the employee parking lot. I was still taking codeine pain pills. Dr. Wichman wouldnu2019t extend my medical leave to let me stay home from work but he would give me codeine pills! I was driving on the freeway every day under the influence of codeine but I had no choice. I could barely stand up. The pain level wouldnu2019t go down. I kept taking off of work to rest my hip until my supervisor threatened to fire me. Nearly a year after the surgery I decided to apply for a disability pension through my employer. I went to see Dr. Wichman and told him I planned to apply for the disability pension. He agreed and gave me a note stating that I could no longer work. I applied for a disability pension and was directed to go to three Aurora doctors for an exam. I gave the lead Aurora doctor the note Dr. Wichman had given me. He told me that my disability pension was approved but he had to check with Dr. Wichman before he finalized my application. Five months later I received a denial notice. According to the pension office, Dr. Wichman had changed his mind and rescinded his note that stated I could no longer work. Not only that, he told the Aurora lead doctor that I should return to work full time without any restrictions! Based on Dr. Wichmans recommendation, my disability pension was denied. That was the beginning of the end for my finances. I couldnu2019t work. My sick leave was exhausted. My hip felt like it was going to explode. I got a letter from the personnel office of my employer threatening to fire me if I didnu2019t come back to work. I had no choice but to quit. Quitting my job meant losing my health insurance. I was in a real jam physically and financially. My hip hurt so bad it felt like it was going to break off. My leg was still swelled up. My rental properties needed constant maintenance. I didnu2019t have the money to pay for the maintenance and I couldnu2019t do the work myself. I was able to sell several of the properties at a steep discount but two others were foreclosed on. My car was repossessed. Most everything I had accomplished in the previous dozen years I lost. And of course my leg still hurt and I didnu2019t know why. Out of desperation I went online and found a doctor in Boston who charged me $17.00 and told me that I probably had sciatic nerve damage. He suggested I go to a neurologist and have a test done which I did. The neurologist I went to told me that my sciatic nerve was damaged so badly he could see it in real time on his display as opposed to waiting for a print out and checking the results. Keep in mind this was some 18 MONTHS after the surgery. At least now I knew what was wrong. After an online search I discovered that the sciatic nerve is close to the hip and is susceptible to damage during hip surgery. Luckily I had applied for SSD but by the time that was approved I was bankrupt. Around this time Dr. Wichman actually sent me a bill asking for money. More than a dozen years have passed since that surgery. Iu2019ve spent most of that time in a reclining chair. Whereas before I was mostly pain free now Iu2019m in pain non stop. The pain level never went down. It just stopped going up. Before I was on the go 16+ hours a day, now I sit most of the time. My quality of life disappeared along with my income which has dropped about 75%. I complained to the Wisconsin state medical board but that accomplished nothing. I told them about Dr. Wichman collecting body parts from people. I never heard anything back. The only thing they would tell me was that I wasnu2019t the only one complaining about Dr. Wichman. They also said that the state medical board doesnu2019t get involved in patient complaints unless a lot of people complain about a doctor. That sounds good but if a doctoru2019s action incapacitates a patient, who is there left to complain? I contacted many lawyers who werenu2019t interested. As the years go by I find myself trying to figure out Dr. Wichmanu2019s motivation. Why did Dr. Wichman break my leg during the surgery? If he had to break my leg to get the first artificial hip out, why didnu2019t he just leave it alone? Did Dr. Wichman remove my first artificial hip just so he could add it to his personal u201cmuseumu201d, a souvenir of sorts? Dr. Wichman told me with a smile that he put more hardware in me than any other hip replacement he had ever performed. Did he damage the sciatic nerve in the process? Iu2019ll never know. All I know for sure is that the surgery Dr. Wichman performed ruined me physically and Dr. Wichmanu2019s sabotaging of my disability pension helped to ruin me financially as well. Whatu2019s the lesson here? I donu2019t trust anyone whose name begins with DR. or ends with ESQ anymore thatu2019s for sure. On the one hand I think I was too trusting but on the other hand I had nothing to worry about or so I thought. Dr. Wichman had performed my first hip replacement. That worked out so well what could possibly go wrong?
Address: 1575 N Rivercenter Dr # 160 Milwaukee, Wisconsin USA