Trial begins for Dr. Atiq Durrani without him: 5 things to know about the fugitive spine surgeon's case


Although former Cincinnati-based spine surgeon Atiq Durrani, MD, fled the country in 2014, the case against him involving more than 500 patients is set to begin today, according to WLWT5.


Here are five things to know:

1. Dr. Durrani is not expected to appear in court. He fled to Pakistan after federal charges accused him of insurance fraud and performing unnecessary spine surgery. He was initially arrested in July and ordered to surrender his passport, but was still able to leave the country.

2. One of the hospitals where Dr. Durrani performed surgery at joined around 500 patients who filed suit against him for poor outcomes and unnecessary procedures. He is also accused of fraudulently charging Medicare for millions of dollars and was indicted on 46 federal charges associated with clinical and billing issues.

3. The lawsuit claims Dr. Durrani used the product PureGen outside of approved clinical use. He owned 40 percent of the company that made PureGen.

4. Dr. Durrani had practiced at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center and West Chester Hospital.

5. Former patient Cathy Biel filed the case and will be in court today as the trial begins.

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