• Sweden edition
 

Man left with rotting leg after hospital 'loses' him

Published: 13 Oct 2012 09:53 GMT+02:00
Updated: 13 Oct 2012 11:25 GMT+02:00

A 21-year-old Swedish man fears that he will be unable to walk unaided again after Linköping University Hospital lost track of him, leading to a delay in the treatment of a routine foot fracture.

John Bruhne broke his foot while skateboarding and was told by the hospital that he would be home within a couple of days.

Six weeks and eight operations later Bruhne was however still in hospital, according to a report by Sveriges Television Östnytt.

The extended hospital stay was made necessary after staff at the hospital lost track of him as he was moved across several wards.

The subsequent delay in his treatment meant that the muscles surrounding the broken bone began to wither and rot.

Once the hospital had finally located him, Bruhne underwent an emergency operation and three muscles were removed from his bone. He has since undergone a further seven operations to address the injury and ensuing complications.

The 21-year-old expressed concern that he would be unable to make a full recovery from his injury.

"Perhaps I will never be able to walk again. then I think about the sports. That I will never be able to play football or inner-bandy," he said to SVT.

"It is awful that this type of thing has to happen just to save money."

The incident has been reported to the National Board of Health and Welfare (Socialstyrelsen) in accordance with Sweden's Lex-Maria laws, the informal name for regulations governing the reporting of injuries and incidents in the healthcare system.

The Local/pvs (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

10:05 October 13, 2012 by byke
What is the patient complaining for?

He is getting FREE health care ...

No one forced him to go skateboarding or use this hospital.

Oops edit : Just realized that the hospital isn't free since it heavily subsidized through some of the highest taxes in the world. And even then requires a admittance fee and he then has to pay medical costs etc. Good to see so much value and choice.
10:27 October 13, 2012 by johan rebel
The hospital lost track of him where? In the hospital itself?
11:15 October 13, 2012 by krrodman
@Johan

It seems likely that the hospital put his foot in a cast to allow for the swelling to go down before performing definitive surgery to fix the fracture. They "lost" him means that they never called him back for surgery. A preliminary cast is totally inadequate to treat a displaced ankle fracture.

A more ominous possibility is that while waiting for the hospital to get in touch with him he developed a compartment syndrome from excessive swelling. That would explain the muscle loss and need for multiple surgeries.

Ugly no matter how you look at it.
13:27 October 13, 2012 by cogito
Obamacare...coming to your neighborhood soon, USA.
15:54 October 13, 2012 by Hauhr
For some reason, I get the funny feeling that if you should need an ambulance in Sweden, you're doomed...

Check out this worrying catalogue of bad news:

1 - Man left with rotting leg after hospital 'loses' him (13 Oct).

www.thelocal.se/43794/20121013

2 - Swede forced to fake stroke to get x-ray (3 Oct).

www.thelocal.se/43598/20121003

3 - Elderly woman dies after ambulance no-show (1 Oct).

www.thelocal.se/43548/20121001

4 - Patient waits eight hours in emergency ward, dies (26 Sept).

www.thelocal.se/43454/20120926

5 - Paramedics opt for shift change, patient dies (17 Sept).

www.thelocal.se/43268/20120917

6 - Ambulance call outrage: 'Are you black or white?' (25 Jun).

www.thelocal.se/41644/20120625

7 - Report slams denied ambulance call death (27 Mar).

www.thelocal.se/39930/20120327

8 - Heart attack victim dies after ambulance denied (14 Mar).

www.thelocal.se/39656/20120314

9 - Swede with broken neck sent home on painkillers (29 Feb).

www.thelocal.se/39408/20120229

10 - 17-year-old dies after ambulance no-show (9 Feb).

www.thelocal.se/39022/20120209

11 - Man dies after ambulance call went unanswered (1 Feb).

www.thelocal.se/38842/20120201
17:09 October 13, 2012 by Svensksmith
While living in Sweden, I met an elderly man who had just been bitten by a huggorm (a poisonous snake). He refused medical treatment and instead just poured some hot coffee on the wound. I thought the old guy was pretty tough...perhaps he was just afraid of the hospital.
10:32 October 14, 2012 by Keith #5083
Mistakes like this should not happen,but they do.They do in almost all systems, so you 'American election freaks' go and do some research about that system's errors,please, before commenting(hint: Google medical malpractice...almost 8 million answers....agreed not all to do with what's reported here, a fair percentage is to do with the lawyers and case law).

The moral of this story, and any other in whatever country...is shout like hell, get attention and don't, don't let them do anything to you they have not fully explained to you. Nobody knows your body better than you do.
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