Stephanie Drake is a former chronic smoker who was treated twice, on separate occasions, at Seattle Grace Hospital.
Five years from her second operation at Seattle Grace Hospital, Stephanie Drake was diagnosed with emphysema due to her five-pack-a-day smoking habit. In order to relieve the pressure in her chest and to improve her quality of life, Mrs. Drake was admitted to Seattle Grace under the care of Dr. John Davies, an attending cardiothoracic surgeon, and his surgical fellow at the time, Dr. Preston Burke.
During the operation, Dr. Davies performed a left upper lobectomy on Mrs. Drake lungs. After Dr. Davies finished, Dr. Burke finished by performing the close. Unfortunately, Dr. Burke had erroneously left a surgical towel within Mrs. Drake thoracic cavity. The incident went unreported as Dr. Burke feared that it would cause irreparable damage to his cardiothoracic surgical career.
Soon after, Mrs. Drake overcame her habit and quit smoking cold-turkey. However, in the next five years, she still suffered discomfort and had to resign from her restaurant job.
Mrs. Drake returned to Seattle Grace Hospital five years later to surgically relieve the pressure in her lungs. She was assigned to resident surgeons Miranda Bailey and George O'Malley, who was a surgical intern at the time, and attending surgeon and Chief of Surgery Richard Webber.
After a chest x-ray, Mrs. Drake was diagnosed with hyper-inflated lungs caused by, what they thought, was bullae. Dr. Webber noted this was her second visit and advised both Dr. Bailey and Dr. O'Malley to refrain from the anti-smoking lecture. However, during Mrs. Drake pre-operative prep, Dr. O'Malley mentioned to her that it would have been a good idea to stop smoking. Mrs. Drake then informed Dr. O'Malley that she did indeed quit, but the discomfort continued. It was this conversation that Mrs. Drake became fond of Dr. O'Malley.
During her laprascopic procedure, both Dr. Webber and Dr. Bailey discovered the surgical towel in an attempt to cut the bullae, and immediately converted to an open thoracotomy to extract the towel. Once removed, Dr. Webber assumed that the towel came from her initial surgery at Seattle Grace. Dr. Webber soon tasked Dr. Bailey to spearhead the investigation as to how this could have occurred, while he had the conversation with Mrs. Drake regarding her post-operative condition.
Dr. Bailey assigned fellow surgical intern Cristina Yang to look into the post-operative reports to identify the doctors involved with the initial surgery. Given Mrs. Drake fondness of Dr. O'Malley, Dr. Bailey assigned him to pacify Mrs. Drake to mitigate the potential lawsuit. Dr. Yang soon discovered that Dr. Burke was the surgical fellow assigned to the case at the time and had performed the closing procedure. She immediately shared these results with Dr. Bailey, who then approached Dr. Burke about this matter.
During an unrelated case, Dr. Burke admitted to his carelessness to Chief Webber and the hospital's legal counsel and then personally apologized to Mrs. Drake.
Notes and TriviaEdit
- According to Richard Webber, Mrs. Drake was treated at Seattle Grace Hospital in 1999; however, when Cristina examines the post-operative report from Mrs. Drake's surgery, the date shown is 10-18-2000.
- Although her first procedure was performed by cardiothoracic surgeons, Mrs. Drake's second procedure, still involving the thoracic region of the body, was performed by Dr. Webber and Dr. Bailey, both of whom are general surgeons.
- One of her original doctors was named Angela Whiting, the same as the show's property master.