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March 16, 2005

The joys of socialized medicine

Trevor Smithson, a 53-year-old aeronautical engineer in Great Britain had been nagged to lose weight by his doctors for over ten years. In spite of his complaints, he was told by doctors that he was dangerously obese and had only himself to blame for his constant pain, chronic backache and circulation problems.

It was not until he finally went for a consultation at the Royal Marsden Hospital in London that doctors realised the truth: Mr Smith had developed a 25kg (55lb) malignant tumour over a decade. 

By the time it was removed last year, its size had displaced his other internal organs. He lost a kidney and a section of his colon in the operation, needing breathing support as his lungs recovered from being crushed by the tumour. 

Now Mr Smithson, who has been left partially disabled by the ordeal, has referred his complaint to the Healthcare Commission. “(It is) incomprehensible that the collective wisdom and equipment of Royal Berkshire Hospital could somehow manage not to find a 25kg malignant tumour over a period approximating to a decade,” he said.

Great system there, isn't it. 

Posted by Danny Carlton at March 16, 2005 10:35 AM

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