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DOCTOR'S PENALTY DECRIED AS LENIENT

A doctor accused of negligence in his care of a maternity patient fatally infected with "flesh-eating" bacteria was given a year's probation -- a punishment the patient's relatives called too lenient Saturday.

"The treatment he got was considerably better than the treatment, or the lack of treatment, that he gave my daughter," said Philip D'Angelo, whose family already had settled a lawsuit.

His daughter, Susan Dougherty, died in Strong Memorial Hospital in March 1997, 18 days after delivering a healthy girl.

Mrs. Dougherty, 39, apparently developed an invasive strep known as necrotizing fasciitis through her Caesarean incision. Her severe pain wasn't recognized quickly enough as a symptom of the disease that rapidly poisons tissue.

Dr. Stephan Sanko, her physician, also did not visit her the day after her Caesarean delivery, as required by state law. He had been her obstetrician for 10 years and had delivered her two other children.

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