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Dr. Frank Shallenberger, a Carson City doctor, admitted to medical malpractice for failing to diagnose colon cancer in an elderly patient whom later died from the disease.

Deputy General Counsel for the medical board says, the doctor agreed to plea guilty in the case of malpractice. As a result he was fined $5,000, ordered to take 16 hours of classes on cancer screening and issued a public reprimand while also being ordered to pay investigation costs totaling $6,500.

In February 2000, Horton complained of abdominal pain and rectal bleeding – both common symptoms of colon cancer. But the complaint states the Doctor told him he was suffering from hemorrhoids and advised him to use suppositories and take baths with witch hazel.

At no time did the doctor examine the patient or order tests. He was later diagnosed by emergency room doctors with stage-four colon cancer and informed he had six months to live.

Horton was 76, when he died in October 2003.

This is the second time he the Doctor has been disciplined by the medical board in twelve years.

In March 1995, Shallenberger surrendered his California medical license after four patients claimed he was incompetent and grossly negligent in their care.

For more information, please visit our section on Medical Malpractice & Negligent Care.

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