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Man's penis amputated following misdiagnosis

The Local/dl · 29 Dec 2010, 09:10

Published: 29 Dec 2010 09:10 GMT+01:00

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The man, who is in his sixties, first visited a local clinic in Blekinge in southern Sweden in September 2009 for treatment of a urinary tract infection, the local Blekinge Läns Tidning (BLT) reported.

When he returned in March 2010 complaining of foreskin irritation, the doctor on duty at the time diagnosed the problem as a simple case of inflammation.

After three weeks passed without the prescribed treatment alleviating the man’s condition, he was instructed to seek further treatment at Blekinge Hospital.

But it took five months before he was able to schedule an appointment at the hospital.

When he finally met with doctors at the hospital, the man was informed he had cancer and his penis would have to be removed.

It remains unclear if the man would have been able to keep his penis had the cancer been detected sooner.

Story continues below…

The matter has now been reported to the National Board of Health and Welfare (Socialstyrelsen) under Sweden’s Lex Maria laws, the informal name used to refer to regulations governing the reporting of injuries or incidents in the Swedish health care system.

The Local/dl (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

09:29 December 29, 2010 by jayde
Good grief! I didn't know Marianne Ny had a second job as an amateur doctor.
09:33 December 29, 2010 by Arturio
that's really bad for him and his gf. I think the doctor should take his responsibility now.
09:57 December 29, 2010 by philster61
Swedens first accidental transgender...
10:06 December 29, 2010 by salalah
There is a good reason for having circumcision then...
11:03 December 29, 2010 by Brtahan
Stupied doctors, they said for sure , its nothing dricka vatten och äta alvedon. thats what they are famous for!!! See the waiting time how much it is!!! and they want to cut the tax flow to hospitals.
11:45 December 29, 2010 by johnny1939
Look out USA this will be your lot after Obama care takes root. Unmotivated and sloppy care. He should sue the pants of that medical facility...not that he will get much in this country and it will not compensate his loss having to use bags etc. Poor man!
12:23 December 29, 2010 by travels
It took five months before he was able to schedule an appointment at the hospital!!!

That is absolutely unacceptable!

Agree with johnny1939 about the potential of this kind of problems if Obama care takes root in the USA.
14:11 December 29, 2010 by mojofat
How is the US Health Care Law in anyway like Sweden's health care system? This sounds like more uninformed republican/teabagger hysterics to me.

No, what would've happened in the US is his insurance company (if he was lucky enough to have insurance at 60+ years old) would've cited a pre-existing condition and then refused to cover it. Or they would've endlessly sent him to get second, third, fourth opinions. He would have simply waited to die, unless he's rich...that's the US system!
14:21 December 29, 2010 by fikatid
I agree totally with mojofat. :)
14:58 December 29, 2010 by Rebel
"Good grief! I didn't know Marianne Ny had a second job as an amateur doctor."

16:08 December 29, 2010 by zircon
Was it something I said/ did?
17:11 December 29, 2010 by ngecenk

rite... because us health care is perfect, right? Yes, its damn perfect for the prosper and rich.
17:19 December 29, 2010 by Rick Methven
".not that he will get much in this country and it will not compensate his loss having to use bags etc."

He will most probably get a free strap-on job

And it will be at least 10 inches
17:51 December 29, 2010 by freepress
Everyone knows insurance companies are thieves. But in the US, this man would have had the FREEDOM to go to a doctor himself ASAP. He would have had the chance to pay for care himself, or put it on a credit card, beg relatives, friends, or a church for money to help, make private payment arrangements with a doctor, etc. Not ideal but still a possibility, a chance to save yourself, a chance to preserve your quality of life.

In Sweden, you are locked into an authoritarian medical state which decides if and when you will receive help. Doctors are not well educated, and they routinely refuse to help people, and unless you leave the country or perhaps are able to meet with a doctor at a private hospital like Sophiahemmet, then in Sweden, you are left to die or you will be permantly maimed for life. Read the Swedish news. Horror stories like this one are a dime a dozen.

In Sweden, there is NO FREEDOM. There is no chance. In the US, there is a chance. As they are now, both systems hurt people. But in the US, you still have a chance of helping yourself. You still have some chance of control over your own life. In Sweden, there is NO FREEDOM. NO CHANCE. Big Bror owns you. Never forget, never doubt, you are owned. You will live how the state decides you will live.

My heart goes out to this poor man. WHO will take responsibility for this crime?
18:27 December 29, 2010 by maxbrando
mojofat sounds as if he has never lived in the U.S. or has never paid into any insurance scheme. At no time has any person been turned away with a problem like described. Hospitals do not do like this. Not even if you are black and on welfare and live in a big city. The Swedish problem is that doctors in Sweden DON'T CARE very much. Thety are prisoners in the Swedish medical system just as the parients are. There is no incentive to work faster, harder or take more interest in their patients.
18:27 December 29, 2010 by Rick Methven

In Sweden you also have the option for private and specialist medical care. difference between Sweden and the US is that you do not have to sell your house to get it. But heck if you want to support the US system, buy a plane ticket and go back, you will not be missed
18:49 December 29, 2010 by Janis Rochester
When I lived in Sweden and had a suspicious growth on my face, I was shocked at how the Swedish medical system handled it. Even though we are drilled in the states that "early detection is the key" to cancer treatment, there is just no fast route through the system in Sweden. One has no preventative opportunity for "Skin Cancer Checks" as the states do, and it takes months to see a Specialist after your clinic doctor agrees that a suspicious lesion warrants a visit to the Dermotologist.

I ended up paying cash during a trip to the US to have it removed the same day. It took 3 days to get the appointment and without insurance, I was charged the same rate as insuranced subscribers get. Most people don't realize that if someone is uninsured, US hospitals and clinics charge half price and/or work out a payment plan. We have many options and after experiencing both US and Swedish Health care, I prefer the US's. But there are many, many things I love about Sweden!!!!
20:32 December 29, 2010 by laura ka baal
Sweden Doctors have been rated as worse doctors in the world even worse then Africans and Somalians.
21:12 December 29, 2010 by landofthesheeple
It looks as if that guy is going to need an "Addadicktome" opperation : ) @ Rick Meth I was lost on freedoms post, as far as freedoms go in Sweden, the only one missing is that of the press, and freedom of speech, but that is for another disscussion on another forum, because this is Not something to be found at The Local. Re; Medical Insurance... This is why there are high taxes in Sweden, and We should all be happy to pay for such services, and it IS expected that the health care system be available for the "The People" of the state when it is called for. There is nothing wrong with private care, even though a person should Not have to use it for basic medical needs, that is unless for example, require a breast enhancement or face lift. as one should not have to pay for a mistake or, a correction a state facility or local doctor made in error. As far as the US goes, unless a person works for a large company that has a good medical benifits package, they're fck'd and even though there are far more tax payers there, it is quite surprising that there is no public health care system like We see in Sweden. Oh, yes there is a welfare system there but it's a slap in the face to humanity as a whole. Even though the public health care system sucks, Sweden, by far, is still a great place to live... it sure beats the hell out of living in the states : )
21:26 December 29, 2010 by pantheratigris
@ laura ka baal

No wonder, it's only a matter of time before they become Africans and Somalians. Cultural exchange in the first place. Roflmao
21:33 December 29, 2010 by rgodogo
I'm considered poor by U.S. standards but live ok and deliver pizza. Had a benign brain tumor removed 16 months ago which disabled me permanently but am still allowed to work part time. Point is, I have the crudest of insurance plans available to anyone who works and was able to receive brain surgery. They had no clue I had insurance, which in the end did little to help and I ended up with over 120k in bills. No where in the world could I have received such great care in less than 36 hours after initial symptoms without hint of any insurance to the hospital.

Crave and rave for massive government controlled bureaucracies that you think are "free" and give you healthcare. They aren't "free" and provide anything BUT quality healthcare.
21:38 December 29, 2010 by Dr.T
Well Mojofat.....typical of an uninformed liberal/marxsist. Let me tell you why. First , liberal/marxsists always "SHIFT THE ISSUE". The issue here is that someone had an excessive waiting time in a rationed medical system to see a Msedical Specialist(just in case you have troble issue spotting). Second they always deny the facts......every socialized system patient complains of the same proble be it Canada,Ireland,England,France ad infinitum. Lastly you always resort to name calling..."teabagger" . Please try to demonstrate a modicum of intelect. Obama is a Marxsist and his administration is the closest thing to Communistic infiltration of the White House since McCarthism was halted in the '50s. Wonderfully however the People have been awakend from their comforitable slumer and will undo all this nonsense in 2011 and 2012.
21:40 December 29, 2010 by Hugh7
@salalah: No, one neglected case of penile cancer does not justify cutting the foreskin off every baby boy. Penile cancer is very rare, but still more common in the circumcising US than in Scandinavia. It would take thousands of wasted circumcisions to prevent one penile cancer, and the cost and effort of those would make the public health system even slower than it is.
21:41 December 29, 2010 by vandeg
As far as the Swedish man goes, really sad to hear that and wish him the best.

As for all the US insurance stuff, I currently have my own insurance and it is reasonable. There are yearly checkups that are covered, 2 dental checkups are covered, overall its the best for me. It even has road assistance coverage for up to $50(go figure) and I get cheap meds, especially generic. I currently am young, work part time/looking for a internship but it fits me really good.

Some people wonder about insurance, my opinion is start with one early and keep with it. Currently the deductible is quite high but it covers all the regular things and monthly payments are cheap.

I personally would hate to be on a government ran health program but being on privatized has been real nice, does it suck you have to pay a bill every month? Yes but it beats paying a vast sum of money all at once and paying extra taxes to a government for the health program (not to mention I can shop around for a better policy)...
21:57 December 29, 2010 by wxman
Mis-diagnosed and a 5 month wait for an appointment - - classic example of socialized medicine we can expect with Obamacare. Let the leftist posters here shriek all they want. Whenever the light of truth is turned on, the roaches always scurry away.
22:04 December 29, 2010 by freepress
Methven said "In Sweden you also have the option for private and specialist medical care."

Actually, this is NOT true. There is a private hospital, Sophiahemmet, in Stockholm, but patients outside of Stockholm's län do NOT have full access to the specialists at this hospital, plus many of the specialists are fully booked and are not accepting any new patients.

Thus, many people in Sweden do NOT have access to private specialists and must leave the country if they need (immediate) care, such as what Rochester (post #17) described above.

If anyone knows of other private specialists in Sweden, please share. Access to this information could save someone's life.
22:04 December 29, 2010 by student1776
This is why one should have a choice on whether to live with government run healthcare or pay for private care. All the liberals can have their male organs amputated - they will never miss them anyway, indeed the liberal women probably amputated it years ago along with their courage and character. All the people who are willing to pay their own way and care about their lives can keep their masculinity and its physical manifestation :-)
22:13 December 29, 2010 by louisrose
No No Nurse...I said prick his boil, PRICK HIS BOIL!!!
22:22 December 29, 2010 by SD Lurker
Janis Rochester gives the right perspective on US healthcare. Even those who have no insurance can access treatment and do. Is advanced and sophisticated healthcare expensive - yes, of course. It represents the investment of billions of dollars by highly incentivised, private companies that produce treatments and cures for diseases that would otherwise kill us. Those who demand free care with all the best technology are fooling themselves - there is no free lunch.

I have had an HMO for 30 years through my company. Every few years they change the provider because they compete for the best deal. I have had the same medical provider, Scripps Clinic, for 30 years and have never been denied any treatment, surgery, specialist in all that time. I have had rotator cuff surgery, double hernia surgery, eye surgery, multiple CT and MRI scans as well as many specialist visits over that period with excellent outcomes. I never had to wait more than 3 weeks to schedule elective surgery! I get annual exams with prostate PSA check and colonoscopy every 5 years.

On the few occasions where I have visited the ER, I have found mostly low income Mexican people there waiting for medical treatement and I have never seen a single one turned away because they didn't have insurance or could not pay. The fact of the matter is that those of us who can pay, or have insurance, end up compensating the medical facilities for the non-payers through higher prices we (or HMO) pay. There is no free lunch. If any of my outcomes were poor due to bad medical practice I have the right to sue. If an HMO denies me coverage I can appeal and sue. That is called freedom.

There is strong focus on preventative care in the US - prostate exams, mammograms, Papp smears, colonoscopies, skin scans, etc. - because we try to short circuit conditions before they beconme critical.

U.S. doctors are incentivised to practice the best medicine to avoid malpractice suits and to maintain the reputation of their medical practice or hospital. The bad ones eventually get weeded out by removal or by litigation - this does not happen when the government controls all aspects of healthcare. Under central control the pateient gets what he gets, good or bad, and there is minimal incentive to correct bad practice. If a doctor or facility tells me that I have to wait 6 months for surgery I am out the door and finding a new provider - as the consumer I still have the power to decide who I do business with.
22:30 December 29, 2010 by DAVID T
I have Skandia private insurance - it costs around 4000 sek per year and they guarantee you see a doctor on the same day you call. I have nothing but praise for them as I have needed them quite a few times in the last couple of years. I used to use regular doctors but was finding it hard to meet a doctor that could speak swedish or english. All the best swedish doctors have either gone private or left the country for decent wages.
22:38 December 29, 2010 by SD Lurker
Reasonably healthy person will probably be happy under a Swedish-type government system. But heaven help you if you come down with an advanced or exotic life threatening disease you will wish you were in the U.S. system. Just ask all the Canadians who come across the border to get quick diagnosis and timely treatment of conditions for which the Canadian system just puts them in a lengthy queue.

The 2700 page U.S. Healthcare legislation passed in 2010 is a disaster passed in an undemocratic partisan process by a Congress monopolized by a group of ideologues who didn't read it, despite an American public who didn't want it, and founded on far too many lies to list here.

Government controlled health care is just creeping fascism in which the state exerts its control over one of the most important elements of an individual's life.
23:22 December 29, 2010 by Mel Anosis
Is he now a Norwegian?
23:53 December 29, 2010 by vermontaigne
They're just practicing for when the get ahold of Assange.
01:01 December 30, 2010 by SmartDude
Swedish health "insurance" looks horrifying from this type of veterinary type care. Actually, you would never treat an animal the way this poor man was treated.

But hey, its free!

(Actually this nightmarish treatment is far from "free." The idiot slaves are too brainwashed and programmed to accept anything else.)
01:05 December 30, 2010 by theBeaver
I have to LOL at people whining about US healthcare being "only for the rich". In the US the only thing stopping anyone from being "the rich" is their own motivation, innovation, and gumption. I wish it were so for the rest of the world. If folks would quit whining about being a victim of some circumstance or another and just work their a$$ off to overcome their adversity, the rewards will pan out. Otherwise, you're better off losing your junk.... you obviously weren't using it anyway.
01:17 December 30, 2010 by mojofat
@Dr. T

"Please try to demonstrate a modicum of intelect."

Please learn to spell "intellect", if you're going to go around insulting that which you do not possess.

"Obama is a Marxsist and his administration is the closest thing to Communistic infiltration of the White House since McCarthism was halted in the '50s."

Clearly, you do not know the definition of marxist. Secondly, are you saying that McCarthyism prevented communism from infiltrating the white house? Or that McCarthyism was communism that almost infiltrated the white house? I'm confused...and I don't have the Glenn Beck cheat sheet with me to decode your incoherent rambling.
01:53 December 30, 2010 by astralweeks
Dang, guess this means with Obamacare I not only have to look out for myself, but Mr. Happy as well.
02:11 December 30, 2010 by astralweeks
@mojofat Your diatribe is terribly pedantic, puerile, as well as, I daresay, tedious.

Obviously his meaning was straightforward and would be au fait with an ape. Seeing as you cannot grasp the fundamentals, it puts your intellect well below that of a simian aptitude. And of course you're confused, you tend to believe that a haughty, nose in the air attitude, and a well thumbed Thesaurus passes for acumen. My guess is you are, or wish you were, a faculty member at a school of higher learning. Some school that has 'Community College' attached to its name.

Really, your belief that the more syllables a word has denotes your--ahem--brain power, is laughable, and you're the one who could use a cheat-sheet (yes, proper spelling dictates a hyphen between those words you ignorant baboon) to decode your incoherent rambling.

To quote the esteemed and respected Bugs Bunny, you sir, are a 'maroon.'
02:40 December 30, 2010 by freepress
A 35-year old man in this same län just DIED from undiagnosed / untreated bacterial meningitis.

See http://www.blt.se/nyheter/karlshamn/man-dog-av-hjarnhinneinflammation(2229024).gm

Article in Swedish with English translation available. (BLT.se)
03:19 December 30, 2010 by tremont73
Unsual reflex responses of those on the left , supporting government run health care, to suppose worse would happen in a free market. Facts can't get in the way of ideology and feelings Check out the report of Newfoundland prime minister in Canada, Danny Williams, going to the USA for cardiac surgery.....Hell, he could have gone to Sweden had his penis amputated and not have to worry about injuring his heart having sex.
04:28 December 30, 2010 by volvoman9
Thank you @ astralweeks. This idiot is the very type of dolt that makes intelligent Americans question their patriotism. He is obviously a victim of fox news and probably thinks Bush was a hero and hopes to see Palin run in 2012. The reality is that he is a bigot and is confusing his fear of marxisim with a fear that people of color will be permitted the rights that their constitution guarantees. These types must be marginalized...feared; but marginalized.

The trouble with America's health care system mirrors the trouble with America. The original concept is sound but has been corrupted by greed. One poster's contention that hard work is the key to success is at the root of the delusion that has captivated all capitalist society. Hard work is only a basic component of this dream.

No. The real issue with the broken American health care system is the myriad of peripheral industries that have been spawned by the bloated leviathan. Countless minor players are permitted to leech profits in a ponderous structure that is supported by the insurance and drug cartels. These obscenely rich companies in turn buy political favor and have become some of the most powerful lobbies in Washington today. This raping of the middle class of America is championed by the opponents of political change because they are convinced that the capitalist model will work if all restrictions are removed. This is of course delusional thinking and will only serve to perpetuate thenightmare.

America is already steeped in socialism and has been for decades. The American citizen expects certain entitlements and insists that they are provided by the government. Military, education, police and fire. The list is endless. There is however a movement afoot to privatize these industries giving even more clout to corporate America and further marginalizing the roles of government. This will create a feudal state which, I believe was the the driving reason for the creation of this great democracy in the first place. To cast off the control and death grip of a worthless and non productive aristocracy.

Government health care may not be the panacea but any change is a step in the right direction. Eat the rich!!!!!
04:42 December 30, 2010 by Bootstrapped
"In the US the only thing stopping anyone from being "the rich" is their own motivation, innovation, and gumption."

LOL. What a load of BS. My town is blue collar, working class. Not one employed person isn't working their ass off. And guess what, not one of them will be rich anytime soon. There are so many factors in how one becomes lower, middle, or upper class, and hard work is just one of them. My grandfather fought for America in WWII came home and worked insane hours to keep a roof over his kids' head. And his factory was chock full of asbestos. But I guess he never became rich because he was just lazy. Riiighhht.
04:58 December 30, 2010 by NorthDakotaSwede
I don't understand the criticisms of private health insurance in America. I

have a regular job, I'm not rich, I have private health insurance, and I can

get a referral to a specialist without waiting. Five months before this man

could be seen? Ridiculous. That would not happen in America. It will

happen only under Obamacare socialized medicine.
05:08 December 30, 2010 by tercel
It amazes me how people who do not live in the US have this myopic view that if you have no "health insurance" you can not get "medical care". There are millions of people in the US with NO health insurance, for a variety of reasons, maybe they are in their 20's and healthy and rather spend the money on ipads rather than health insurance, maybe they are unemployed and cannot afford health insurance, BUT they can get medical care. Every state is made up of counties (in the south they are called parishes), every county has a county hospital and most have primary care facilities. I worked at the Maricopa County Medical Center, the largest county hospital in the state of Arizona. 90% of the people that used the hospital and it's 14 primary care facilities were poor and uninsured or illegal aliens. It did not matter what your problem was (physical or mental) when you walked through the doors you were seen. When I worked there, it's trauma center was rated #1 in the state and it's burn center was rated #2 in the western US right behind the USC Medical Center. It is a huge myth that if you have no health insurance you sit on the side of the road and die. If you have no health insurance you open up the yellow pages phone book find a hospital and go to the ER once stabilized if you have no insurance you most probably will be transfered to a county hospital where you will receive the same high level of care you received in the ER. Politicians sound bites may give the impression that if you have no health insurance you can not get medical care but no one in the US is denied medical care all of it payed for by the US tax payers.
05:29 December 30, 2010 by stempo1
It is true, By some chance his insurance may not have covered his problem if he had been in the U.S. But at least he'd still have a Dick. Better to be in a little debt than to be just another no-dick Swede. We have doctors and they help people, I don't care if it costs me a little money, That's why I earn it!
07:30 December 30, 2010 by flintis
@NorthDakotaSweded:- It wouldn't happen in America?

Not as long as you can AFFORD to pay for medical insurance that will cover you for more than the common cold!!

Don't forget about the millions that cannot afford to pay, but they're mostly immigrants & blacks so it doesn't count, does it. Apartheid still exists in the US of A.
08:40 December 30, 2010 by mkvgtired
@mojofat, everyone over 65 has healthcare in the US, its called Medicare.

@maxbrando, correct it is illegal for hospitals to turn away patients in the US (all states as far as I know). That being said if everyone has insurance it will make it so those with insurance do not have to subsidize hospital losses for uninsured through higher premiums.

@bootstrapped, one of the elements he referenced was innovation. I am not saying anything bad about people that go to work every day and work their ass off. My dad and brother did it for quite a while before they decided to start a construction company (where they still work their ass off, probably more). That is not the point at all. I know several people that literally started with nothing, that are millionaires in their 20s. It is hard work AND innovation that makes it happen. One of my best friends only ate canned meat and other processed food from Aldi when he moved to the US from Russia with his parents. Now he is a millionaire at 25. He started a company and worked his ass off and did things better than his competitors. I know how it is to work my ass off too, I worked 40 - 50 hours per week while I was enrolled at university for 16 credit hours and still received a good GPA. Im still not rich because I did not innovate.

I have not experienced health care systems in other countries but all I can say is I have been happy with my care (and my family's care) in the US. I am far from rich, but with the insurance I've had through my jobs I have been able to see a specialist whenever I have needed (never more than a week to wait). My mom had cancer, my dad has had artery problems which required surgery. My great grandpa is 93 and has had cancer for 30 years, has had several heart operations, and is still considered healthy for his age. My aunt is not rich but has a rare disease, Myasthenia gravis, that needs very specialized care. She has to go to a university hospital in Chicago (40 Km) to receive it, but can still get her care with her insurance provided by her normal job. I had a scare once where a doctor thought I might have testicular cancer. I saw 3 doctors/specialists, received an ultrasound and an MRI within 2 days, and a follow up ultrasound (1 month later as prescribed). Paying copayments and premiums is a drag but I was glad to get cleared that I did not have cancer so quickly (it never even crossed my mind considering I'm 26 and was 25 at the time).

As I have stated before, if everyone was insured it would ease the strain on those that are currently insured because hospitals routinely write off costs of those that are uninsured and pass the costs via higher treatment prices to those that are.

I like how the article was about the failure of a Swedish institution yet, as always, the conversation moves toward how something similar in the US is inferior. And once again I fell for it and commented.
13:01 December 30, 2010 by mojofat

"Check out the report of Newfoundland prime minister in Canada, Danny Williams, going to the USA for cardiac surgery"

Ahh yes, a rich guy getting treatment in the US. My point exactly. It's an excellent service for well-connected millionaires.

To the multiple comments about it's illegal for hospitals to refuse care, while that may be true it's also legal (and common) for them to bill you, with interest, and when you don't pay to sue you, and when you still can't pay, to put a lein on your house, garnish your wages, etc. Maybe they save your life, but then they slowly ruin it afterwards...seems like there could be a better way.

To all those wetting their panties about "obamacare" (the National Health Care Law) the whole point of it is to insure everyone so that it does bring down costs and people don't have to spend the rest of their lives in destitute poverty simply because they had a health emergency. Keep drinking the Fox News kool-aid though...that's what they want... After all, you've let the neo-cons essentially loot the treasury during the Bush/Cheney years and oversee the largest transfer of public wealth to private hands in history. Smart move. If your conservative policies are so great and effective, why is it from 2001-2008 we saw the least amount of jobs created, a budget surplus turned into the biggest budget deficit ever, a cratered economy, and 50 million people without health insurance? It's because those policies only work for the wealthiest 5%...if you're not in that group, then you're a moron for voting for these people because you have been only voting against your own interests. But again, continue drinking the Fox News kool-aid...you know, the one where Obama is a secret muslim communist who wants to take over the country through health insurance.
15:06 December 30, 2010 by jbust
Let me preface this by saying that I have great respect for the people of Sweden and your way of living. This works for your country. I must also add that I believe you are not being told accurate truths about Healthcare in the Unites States. I am a physician in the USA and I work in a teaching facility. First of all, there are laws in this country prohibiting any hospital to turn away anyone for emergent care. I can tell you from personal experience, I treat a majority of patients with no insurance or a govt sponsered insurance. These people usually end up in a teaching type facility where they get first rate care which gets passed off to the taxpayers and to people who pay for insurance. This concept that if you are poor you don't get taken care of is false because I see and treat these people everyday. I know our system has problems and needs to be fixed but I think socializing medicine for the USA would be a tragic mistake. For a country this size, that would drain the economy and would limit technological advances in the field of medicine. Not to mention ration healthcare services. For all of our problems, we still see people quickly, give them world class care, are still on the cutting edge of technology (and yes this does require a lot of money for research and development but worth it), have very low cancer mortality rates for a country our size compared to the world. Our country was established on personal liberty and religous freedoms. We don't really want the federal govt taking care of us from the cradle to the grave. The majority of us still believe that a free people can take care of problems much more effectively that a govt agency can.
15:22 December 30, 2010 by Bender B Rodriquez
@freepress and Janis:

There are plenty of private practising specialists to go to. Just look under läkare in the yellow pages. You don't have to visit a hospital. Also, Sophiahemmet do accept private patients but it depends on the speciality. Capio Acess also runs hospitals and clinics you can go to.

I regularly visit a dermatologist who runs a private clinic and also works as chief surgeon in one of the best hospitals. One visit costs 600 SEK and removal and pathology tests cost 2000 SEK.
15:36 December 30, 2010 by NorthDakotaSwede

I don't know why you think you know everything, but I live in California, and hospitals here do not turn anyone away whether they are black or white, poor, or illegal. For the indigent, they have county hospitals that are rated very highly, and the local one even has the best trauma care around. Even HMO hospitals do not turn anyone away; it's against the law. I am not rich; I am a wage earner and I can afford Kaiser insurance. Even my neighbor's gardener has Kaiser insurance! Where do you get your information? off the top of your ideologically soaked head? I get mine from real world experience. Thre is no 'Apartheid' here. That's just your propagandistic rhetoric flowing. Do you really know anything except what your handlers tell you?
15:52 December 30, 2010 by coolguy09
ohhh its horrible, it seems the person is not native ,as he was unable to explain things to doctor
17:22 December 30, 2010 by T Murphy
Socialized medicine at its best. ObamaCare - I can't wait.

In the USA, ObamaCare is a solution in search of problem.

What some segments of the US population face is not a lack of quality health care but a lack of health insurance. While some people are uninsured due to unforeseen economic crisis, many are uninsured do to personal choice.

As to the former - no one is turned away from a hospital emergency room do to an inability to pay or a lack of insurance, so yes, there should have been some discussion vis-à-vis health insurance.

For the latter I have no comment as I have been in that situation and know what it is like, still, it is not my job to protect people from themselves.

The ostensible reason for the recent clamor for healthcare reform and resultant legislation is to provide relief to the suffering. In actuality, I believe, the left's continual desire to accumulate power and, in turn, their ability then to warrant fiefdoms to their cohorts is their central desire.

One sixth of the United States economy is a pretty juicy plum.

The electorate, in their wisdom, installed in office in 2008 a super majority of, seemingly, like minded Liberal if not down left Birkenstock wearing socialists, well we gott what we deserve for years of not holding our representatives accountable for their actions.
17:45 December 30, 2010 by AmericanSwede16
There's your Swedish "free healthcare".
18:03 December 30, 2010 by Icarusty
He's going to be a cuckold pretty soon...
19:08 December 30, 2010 by pantheratigris

Good one! lol
19:53 December 30, 2010 by hoosiercheetah
I suppose we shouldn't be surprised that this story precipitated a health care debate. However, it is time to return attention to the poor guy who lost his Johnson.

A moment of silence, please, for the Fallen Hero...

Thank you. Now, I just want to point out, to all you health-care-debaters:

Arguing on the internet is like running in the Special Olympics: Even if you win, you are still retarded.

Good night!
21:13 December 30, 2010 by tomjack
Well his hard times are over.
23:58 December 30, 2010 by Smiling Canuk
"ask all the Canadians who come across the border to get quick diagnosis and timely treatment of conditions for which the Canadian system just puts them in a lengthy queue"

Or ask all the Americans who cross into Canada for health care or prescription drugs because its more affordable. Some Canadian provinces do send people over for certain procedures but the provincial healthcare sytem often pays for it. Its a win/win on both sides of the border because the USA is receiving CDN money for their private for profit hospitals. Some rich Canuks will jump the queue and pay out of pocket to go to the USA rather than stand in line for their sore knee, but there aren't really a lot of them. The premier of NFLD is one of them, but almost everybody in the country thinks he's a dickhead for doing so.
01:31 December 31, 2010 by volvoman9
Well stated @mojofat.
03:40 December 31, 2010 by OnessOfMankind
Stupid Swedish medical system...bunch of dumb aszes...I swear my dad had same problem, prostate cancer that is treated with negligence now became grade 3 cancer...


I swear they are butchers and the stupidest sh*t ever..
04:53 December 31, 2010 by pcs5141
05:43 December 31, 2010 by Albertoz
No wonder Julian Assange does not want to be extradited to Sweden.
07:06 December 31, 2010 by Hoath
"There is a good reason for having circumcision then... "

Actually there is no proven link and cancer of the penis is so rare that neonatal circumcision operation complications kill over 9 times more people than the cancer.
07:49 December 31, 2010 by Uggla
This is so typical of the Swedish hospitals these days! The Freekin suck! It's like a 3rd world country. And the jack ass running Sweden just makes it worse by always cutting back more doctors and more funds. We don't even have an emergency care place for children in our hospital we have to drive over an hour to get emergancy care. How id that suppose to work?

I am totally not suprised by this.
15:51 December 31, 2010 by paulhenri
" The idea―shared by all―is that because Swedes pay these heavy taxes, we have the best doctors and hospitals, the best cars and feeding of the elderly and (here most people are not so sure) the best schools. And wonderful, wonderful, it is the same for everybody. There is equality. To which I say: BS.

I live and pay taxes in France. This means that instead of paying 50,000 SEK (that's about 50 percent) every month to the tax man, I pay maybe 25,000. I can buy many good dinners for that money, and, yes, make a trip to that horribly unequal country, the U.S., from time to time. Doctors and hospitals, I should add, are more or less free in France, too, and according to everybody I know, generally better than their counterparts in Sweden. So where does the money go?"

16:39 December 31, 2010 by VicTaulic
In the USA, the MD shortage is so severe that non-MD's are being allowed to do more and more things. Under Omnibus House Bill WR-34927632 (Gibbs-Ky et al.), which Obama is expected to sign after returning from Hawaii, Chiropractors are given the authority to remove penises. This is something that they have wanted to do for years.
17:01 December 31, 2010 by MarshaLynn
This is what the socialist system gets you. Socialism seems so humane to liberals, on the surface. But once it is full blown, people are no longer people. They are numbers that must take their place in a long line and wait. Not just in healthcare, but in everything. Go to your local drivers license office in America and see the line. That's government bureaucracy. It simply is no good for human beings, and only gullible wide-eyed utopian thinkers opt for this. People who want to "overthrow" the American private health care system are, simply put, ignorant fools. Yes, it could use some improvement, but turning it over to the federal government is just insane. America is a country where the people are (supposedly) in charge. Our federal government has become way too large, bureaucratic and authoritarian, which by the way is in violation of our Constitution which states that all powers not expressly given to the federal government in the Constitution are reserved to the states. I consider it to be a blight on our nation that there are so many socialists and downright communists and marxists who want us to go to an authoritarian, anti-human form of government. They are just stupid, but they are also dangerous to the liberties guaranteed in our Constitution. As to healthcare, no one in America goes without healthcare. If that is what you are being told, then you are being lied to. At the very least, those without healthcare can (and DO!) go to hospital emergency rooms where they receive treatment and do not have to wait months like this poor man. And this is what they want for us here in America? NEVER! We are on the road to repealing Obamacare and won't stop until that is accomplished.
17:21 December 31, 2010 by Rick Methven
I never understand why all these reactionary Americans come on The Local to complain about Obama. and his health care program.

In Sweden we are happy with the system that we have. The vast majority of Americans on The Local who actually LIVE in Sweden prefer the Swedish system to that in the US.

Even if it was not the case why bitch about it to us?

What do you expect to do about it?

You have enough US web sites where you can plot your revenge on Obama for saving people lives. Why not go there and leave us to enjoy our peace.

Happy New year
17:55 December 31, 2010 by paulhenri
"As a former Swedish citizen, I must say I'm not surprised. Granted, this case is sensational, but medical malpractice, or much more common, indifference by medical professionals is widespread. A large part of the problem, in my view, is the relative safety in which physicians practice in Sweden. Tangible repercussions for even egregious failures and mistakes are all but nonexistent. Perhaps as part of cost containment, physicians will often do nothing, telling patients to "take two Alvedon (Tylenol)" and come back if it doesn't get better. The government can and will award some token sum of money to victims of malpractice but the physician can go on practicing like nothing happened. Because health care is guaranteed, there is often a shortage of doctors and other medical professionals. These shortages vary by administrative regions and there are often long waits for specialized procedures (and sometimes common procedures as well). I once waited 8 hours in an ER with a broken bone (and a lot of pain!) - there were only one or two other patients there besides me but no physicians were available and the nurses were not allowed to set the broken bone. In rare cases, a patient may be allowed to receive treatment outside of his/her region. However, people have been known to register their residency at a relative's address simply to receive care in that region. Increasingly common is also the influx of foreign physicians. Due to the need for medical professionals, language skills become a secondary consideration, adding to misunderstandings and misdiagnoses. There are of course many well-meaning professionals there, but the health care system is structured in such a way that efficiency and quality control are systematically undermined. My views may be tainted by a strong dislike for anything socialism, but I have seen enough of the Swedish health care system to not want to be treated there for anything more serious than a bruise."

18:18 December 31, 2010 by flappinggums
Well said bootstrapped. And finally, hoosiercheetah.....absolutely brilliant comment, genuinely made me laugh out loud for a couple of seconds & then think, yeah, f**k all folk on here have actually mentioned the poor bloke who has to live the rest of his life with no penis & be reminded of that fact every time he wants to make love/jerk off/urinate/just crack a fat lol. Mate, whoever you are, I am so sorry you've lost your penis & one man to another, all ribald comments n jokes aside, you have my deepfelt sympathies & I hope you keep strong my brother, it must be a nightmare scenario to be forced to endure.
18:37 December 31, 2010 by paulhenri
Alla svenska människor tycker om svenska vård? Även mannen i den här artiklen?

"...Tyvärr ser vi att vården blivit en marknad där ekonomin går före omsorgen. Ambulanser ska utnyttjas maximalt så det är inte säkert att det finns en i tid när den behövs. Vårdplatser sparas bort och läkarutbildningen är för liten. Bättre att importera läkare och låta dem arbeta i 14-dagars skift (336 timmar på raken), men hur blir kvalitén och säkerheten? Sedan låter vi läkare som förfalskar sina meriter arbeta som läkare!..."


There are numerous patient advocate groups in Sweden fighting for appropriate care or numerous diseases. There are many native Swedish people who are not happy with the quality of care in Sweden. A lot of people have paid a lot of money towards health care in Sweden. Where is that care when it is needed?

I'm sure the man in this article didn't work the past forty years of his life and pay into a medical system for forty years, so he could get blown off and left with cancer, left to die, with his you-know-what literally rotting off. It's unexcusable.

Being ignored and not taken seriously is a very common problem in the Swedish system. Check any patient förening website, and you will find groups of people who have been mistreated and who are fighting to get care for themselves and to prevent horrors from happening to other people. People are not happy with the quality of care or their access to care.

Maybe the system used to work. I don't know. But it seems very clear that there is no longer enough money, and people are not getting proper care, and they are suffering greatly, tragically, and unneccessarily! People want the care they've worked and paid for, eller?
19:06 December 31, 2010 by flappinggums
Oh yeah....(retard running here hoosiercheetah)....As far as I am aware the USA has a fantastic healthcare system that pretty much works but the insurance premiums are way high (when compared to similar coverage in other first world nations) & that can mean a choice between grade A healthcare & something equally important for a family. That comment is based on my conversations with 2 yanks whom I worked with in Ireland who said they paid $12000US between them to insure their families (4 adults, 6 kids) & those costs coupled with trying to save for their kids college was a factor in their leaving the (as they said) 'bestest, most fkd up country on earth' lol One was from Chicago & the other, Rhode Island. Not sure if location is a factor in the USA though, just saying.

One question I do have though is this.....When those commenting on here say that noone gets turned away from healthcare in the US regardless of wealth, I can be sure they are not lying, the hippocratic oath is fairly unequivocal on that front, but does that mean if you're poor/uninsured & break your leg etc you'll get treatment for sure or does it mean if you have no insurance & require long term treatment eg.$25K PA worth of prescription drugs/3 treatments of dialysis per week/years of physical therapy etc you'll get those relatively no problem for free too? I ask because every time I listen to the candidates for POTUS they all, regardless of party, say that veterans are getting a crap deal & they'll sort out the shocking way people who've fought for their country are cared for blah blah blah(The fact I've heard it for 20 years makes me add the blah blah blah by the way, no disrespect to service people) My point is, if vets are a political issue & tend to get 'fixed when shot' but, according to the candidates, 'marginalised & underfunded' long term, is this something that applies to the poorer/unisured in terms of the quality of long term healthcare they receive post emergency room?

I have zero axe to grind with either system, I really am just asking because I have never been to the USA for treatment, only to Hawaii for a holiday where I broke my nose when a wave made my surfboard smash into it & KO'd me for a couple of seconds(I was learning, I was crap lol). My holiday insurance paid for the hospital visit but I was shocked at the cost, $2600 for the ambulance, x-rays, painkillers, a night of observation & breakfast. It was a great hospital though & the actual care & attention I received were first class. (In Ireland I had my appendix out & the buggers forgot to feed me for a day & a 1/2 lol so, truly, I have no anti US bias in my question)
19:51 December 31, 2010 by SD Lurker
Flappinggums gets to the crux.

The best care costs more than mediocre care. Everyone wants the best but doesn't want to pay for it. We all have to compromise as to what we are able to afford in this material world.

I want a turbo-Porsche but I don't suggest that I should have one for the price of a Toyota Camry.

A great deal of advanced medical technology, pharmaceuticals and research was and is generated in the US and the rest of the world benefits from it but most of those advances are payed for by US taxpayers.

One Canadian pointed out that Americans flock to Canada for cheap meds - which is true - but neglects to point out that because Americans pay higher prices big Pharma gets the R&D funds needed to develop newer and better treatments.

Flappinggums mentions the $2600 bill for his medical treatment in Hawaii which would not surprise most Americans. What he may not understand is that half of that cost goes to "insure" the uninsured and people who can not or do not pay their bills as well as pay for the doctors and hospitals insurance premiums (aka trial lawyers enrichment fund).

My dad was born in Sweden and my mother in Canada but I have not lived in either and have no experience with either system other than anecdotes. Its clear that posters here have a mixed view of the Swedish system and the US system.

I think there are definite reforms that can be made to improve US healthcare but the politics gets in the way. One OBVIOUS need is tort reform to reduce ridiculous legal rewards (1/3 to the law firm) but because the trial lawyers are one of the largest contributors to the Democrats, this was never considered.
20:54 December 31, 2010 by Frederpotts
Sorry! My comment was rejected because of profanity!? Is "urinating" blood acceptable? I was trying to tell my story and then it gets rejected? Typical!
08:28 January 1, 2011 by qed16
My experience with the Swedish heathcare system has been only positive.

That said, running a gov't healthcare system for 9 million people in Sweden which, in general, has some respect for gov't services is a whole different ballgame than doing it for 300m Americans, many of whom hate the gov't by default.
08:37 January 1, 2011 by prolific_programmer
It is not clear from the news that whether he has lost all or some part has been saved.

If he has been left with the half which is around 4.5 inch or 11.43 centimeters, then it should be sufficient for his daily routine.

However still I feel sorry for him and Wish him best of luck. May be some surgery mend his loss.

I accept Swedish Drs . are really inexperienced, careless and dumb. Such Dr should be punished by treating each other.
09:57 January 1, 2011 by TexasSwede
Comment: My dad is from Sweden and my mom is from the U.S. They pay for private health insurance in Sweden. She had an accident and needed emergency surgery in Sweden. She was butchered by the doctors and left with hideous scars. I was very upset with the Swedish hospital and doctors. My dad said do not blame the Swedish doctors that we cannot judge them by that one doctor and hospital...until...mom needed another surgery. They found another doctor who left her with metal rods and in even more pain and more crippled. Such severe pain and they only prescribed some crap called Alvedon and Treo. She was in a wheelchair for 8 months...until.... She came to the States to see an American doctor. With no Insurance in America we had to pay cash to the doctors and hospital. The doctor met her and operated on her within 4 days. She now runs 3 miles a day on a treadmill! So my heart does go out to this poor man! And I agree that these doctors who practice medicine so recklessly should be punished.
10:58 January 3, 2011 by Don-Griz
I think it is fair to say that the doctors did not give the man the cancer and that even if diagnosed correctly upon the first examination, there is no guarantee that the outcome would have been any different. From reading the very short article, it is obvious that it lacks a lot of information and relevant facts. Another point is that the headline says it took over a year for the man to get proper diagnosis; but, the article only mentions 5months and three weeks.

Still, it seems too long to wait; but, is not very different from my experience in the USA when I required a specialist who was not in my insurance plan's network of preferred providers.

Furthermore, cancer in the penis can be caused by untreated sexually transmitted diseases such as Chlamydia and Condyloma even though they may exhibit few or no symptoms. The bottom line is, that the man did get life saving treatment and did not have to file for bankruptcy to do it. Still, there are private practitioners that anyone can go to if they can afford it (BTW, I called a private dermatologist and was told I could not be seen as a new patient for 3 months).

Before making this issue a USA versus Sweden game, you should research similar cases and their occurrence in the USA or any other country in the world for that matter. Here is a good link for starters:


The take away to this post is, don't preach to the Swede's about health care in Sweden when 45,000 Americans DIE every year because they don't have health insurance.
14:05 January 4, 2011 by HowSwedeitis
This is a rare, isolated incident. Those that wish to bash Sweden, President Barack Obama and the National Health Care Plan must scower pages upon pages of the internet looking for a handfull of stories. All the while, as Don-Griz pointed out, 45,000 Americans die each year. The United States Federal Government and the Swedish Health System may need some improvement, but they are both very good systems.

22:38 January 4, 2011 by kara04
Regardless of one's nation, cancer patients need immediate access to

diagnostic tests, surgery, and radiation/chemo. This is precisely what I

received in Boston three years ago. If I had not had insurance, my doctors

said I still would have been given the same excellent care paid from

the hospital's free care pool. I resent the vicious lie that Americans are

denied vital medical care without insurance.

No one ever mentions why private insurance in the U.S. is so expensive.

Gov. intervention forces thousands of mandates on plans which make

them so difficult to afford for many. If catastrophic insurance was allowed

to be sold, it would be cheaper than auto insurance, and would protect

familes dealing with serious illness.
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