Our Story Part 9

Final conversations with Sisler

We spoke over the phone with Sisler on one occasion after his return from Africa and we saw him one more time (at Lindley’s insistence). The only solution Sisler ever offered us was disturbing. He proposed going back into the back of the eye (a third surgery) and putting in more silicone oil to replace what had leaked out. We asked him how often he had performed that procedure. He said “never.” That was all we needed to hear. A year later (in court) his protege Kimberly Hsu said that his suggestion was a bad idea for two reasons: 1) the purpose of the oil is only to secure the retina while the laser burns heal that reattached it AND 2) since the leaky port had never been repaired, putting more oil in would only cause more oil to leak into the conjunctiva.

We told Sisler that we were very upset about how he had never taken any of our concerns seriously starting with the April 13 phone call when we first noticed the swollen conjunctiva. We said that when we routinely brought up concerns about Peanut’s discomfort that he did not take it seriously. Instead he would dismiss our concerns as cosmetic or say “he just needs a bath.” Once he had even said that we got what we deserved for getting a breed with known eye issues. We reminded him that we adopted Peanut and did not buy him from a breeder.

We told Sisler we thought his approach to Peanut was cavalier and glib. He did not treat Peanut as an individual and as the unique case that he was. Instead it seemed from numerous remarks Sisler had made to us that he was following a standard and set protocol in his approach to Peanut: i.e. the patient should be off the cone after x number of weeks; the patient should be off steroids by xx number of weeks.

Finally, we asked Sisler if what happened to Peanut is the possible small bubble of silicone oil in the eye that he discussed with us before even doing the surgery. He said that this was entirely different.

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