Patients in limbo after eye doctor surrenders license

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - A Charlotte eye doctor's patients are in limbo, after he relinquished his medical license.

Jonathan Christenbury gave up his right to practice medicine Thursday, amid sexual harassment accusations from two former employees.

An empty parking lot at Christenbury Eye Center Friday afternoon showed no sign of activity.

Across town, patient Derege Bizuwork is concerned about what will happen to his eye, after the last of three surgeries he had was canceled abruptly.

"I was looking forward to finishing up, I think this would've been my last round," he says.

Wednesday night, he had been using his eye drops, in preparation. Then, he received a voicemail from the eyecare center.

"Unfortunately, due to an emergency, Dr. Christenbury is not going to be in the office tomorrow, or returning for the rest of the week," the message on his phone says. "This voicemail is to let you know your appointment has been cancelled."

"It just took me by surprise," Bizuwork says.

The patient says he assumed the reasoning for the cancellation was something like a death in the family, but he then learned what happened from WBTV news reports.

Now, the waiting and uncertainty means added concern about the health of his eye.

"I don't want my eye healing incorrectly or not finishing the procedure," he says

Bizuwork says the surgery has been paid for. Now, he is wondering why it seems there was not more planning for patients, before the center closed its doors.

"I don't know how it all came about," he says. "But it just seems like that would've been the right approach."

In that voicemail, the center promised a follow-up call by the end of this week, or early next week.

A call made to Christenbury's listed attorney was not answered Friday afternoon.

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