Can a perfect diagnosis elude a patient 37 times? In a pathetic culmination of a young father's life, who's left behind two really young children, died due to cancer of the kidney, after doctors missed the crucial diagnosis of cancer, not once or twice, but 37 times.
Peter Cura, a carpenter from Rainham ,was being examined many times over the last14 month period after suffering excruciating back pain. In spite of coming up with typical cancer symptoms, and subject to number of scans, doctors simply could not place a finger on the disease. He had approached the Medway Maritime Hospital in Gillingham, Kent
Instead, Doctors felt they were kidney stones, even after his insistence that they investigate the cause of the pain. At his behest, when a CAT scan was done, it revealed that one kidney was absolutely dead and had to be removed. Only when the surgeons operated upon him, did they discover a 3 inch tumor . When they tested him further, they realized that the cancer had spread throughout his body, now beyond repair
Mr Cura died last week. Two weeks before his death, he seemed angry and bitter about the delayed diagnosis. He said: I mainly feel anger with the doctor I was seeing at the time. It crossed my mind that it might be cancer. But when I asked the doctor he said, Definitely not. When the kidney was taken out, it was sent for tests and they found a tumour, 8cm across, but even then we were told there was nothing to worry about. I try not to think about it (dying) too much but I am angry about the way the doctor was so blase about it.
His wife Julia , totally shattered said We want the hospital to admit what they have done and to do something about it so that others don't have to go through this. Mrs Cura is seeking legal opinion and may sue the health trust. Sarah Harman, will be representing her case.
Miss Harman said: It is tragic that such a young man with a family should have lost his life in a situation that was avoidable. The care provided by Medway Maritime Hospital was far below what he had a right to expect. One mistake can be excused, but in Peter's case there were a series of lost opportunities when his life could have been saved. He had 37 hospital visits over this time, many to accident and emergency and the outpatient departments, but not once was a correct diagnosis made. He had various appointments for scans and physical examinations but not once was kidney cancer raised as a possible cause.