An Unfortunate Accident
This news clipping has been doing the rounds:
Is it true? It does have urban-legend qualities to it, but a search of LexisNexis reveals that it was widely reported in April 2002. English-language papers credited the story to the Danish newspaper BT. The surgeon was identified as Jorn Kristensen. The Sun had this line:
Surgeon Jorn Kristensen said of the chain reaction: "No-one considered the possibility."
So, given the specific details, I'm going to say that
it appears to be true
my hunch is that it's true, but I'll list it as undetermined.
Commenting is not available in this channel entry.
and for a mole no less...
What the hell?
- "Soaked in surgical spirits"? Yeah, right - they'd swab the area, yes, but not dunk half a litre on there.
- Surgical spirits evaporate fast - in seconds. And the surgeon will administer anaesthetic after the cleaning, so the chances of loads of unevaporated alcohol soaking the area are repote.
- Even if the area were still wet with spirits, alcohol burns fast - slosh it on and set a match to it and I reckon you'd be unlikely to get more than a second or two of flaming pubes.
- If the knife could ignite a fart, and if there was still enough spirit to burn, then it would be likely for the knife to set light to the spirit directly. You think a hospital would use equipment which carries that kind of risk?
- "When I woke up"? General anaesthetic for mole removal? Shit, they don't use that for brain surgery! And how long was that scrotum supposed to have been burning again?
- The the most reputable source on this is the Sun? And 'widely reported' is somehow suggestive of accuracy? Please...
do your homework or be quite, thank you very much.
No further comment.
The fact that even the hopital is missnamed (there's a Kjellerup hospital, but not a Kjellerups hospital) makes me suspicious - as does the fact that this misspelling is universally replicated in all articles about the supposed mishap, even the ones with quotations from the 'victim' and surgeon which wwere not included in the Stadard column. It's also odd that there are no pages anywhere listing both the name 'Jorn Kristensen' and 'Kjellerup', although there are plenty referring to this story if you go with the misspelling 'Kjellerups'.
What's more, 'surgeon Jorn Kristensen' doesn't even seem to exist (at least online): once you screen out replications of this story, the only vaguely medical-sounding Danish Jorn Kristensen to have any kind of web presence seems to be Peder Jorn Kristensen, director of the medical device supplies company Unomedical in Slovakia. (Of course, an absence of evidence is not evidence of absense - but I do wonder how those enterprising journos found him for their quotations!)
Anyway, I'm wasting far too much time on this!
Do a google search for "JH Kristensen" and Viborg, and you'll get results listing JH Kristensen as being in the Department of Clinical Biochemistry at Viborg-Kjellerup County Hospital.
Also, with 'normal' mole removal, the entire procedure takes 30 seconds at the most, and is called a shave biopsy and bleeding is minimal, no need for the equipment mentioned above, unless it's MOSE surgery, but that's highly unlikely on the buttocks.
Just my two cents.
Where does mole removal come under the remit of the Department of Clinical Biochemistry? (Actually, I found refs listing him as belonging to the Dept of Internal Medicine, but who knows how the hospital is organized?) None of the papers I saw suggested surgery. And again, why do all the articles refer to 'Kjellerups Hospital' if the real institution is 'Viborg-Kjellerup County Hospital'? To me, that suggests that all the stories come from one original report somewhere, written by someone who at the very least didn't do much fact-checking.
[Back after more googlehunting... Dunno why I'm so curious about this.] Well, 'Viborg-Kjellerup County Hospital' seems to be (judging from here) Viborg/Kjellerup Sygehus, actually called Regionshospitalet Viborg (maybe as a result of some rebranding/reorganizing?). It's a difficult place to search, but hereis a staff list for people with 'K' surnames (with email addresses). There's no 'Jorn Kristensen', but there is a Joergen (Jorn doesn't seem to be a variant of Joergen that I can find, but maybe a 'chinese whispers' version of his name?)... FWIW he does seem to be a surgeon, at least.
The variant spellings of Kjellerup/Kjellerups don't seem significant to me. Foreign words often get misspelled when reported in English.
I think there's a decent chance you'll get an answer from Kristensen, depending on whether he has a sense of humor.
I should change the status of this to "undetermined" but I still have a hunch that it may turn out to be true. The news reports give some verifiable details: a hospital and a surgeon whom the BT reporter apparently talked to. Usually when urban legends are reported as news, you don't get specific details like that. You get "friend of a friend" references instead.
Regarding hospital restructuring - yep, there's been changes of exactly that nature here over the last couple of years (from January 1 2007 to be precise). All the old counties (groups of local councils/municipalities previously responsible for health care) have been replaced by larger (health) regions and some smaller hospitals have merged or been closed.
I'd be happy to provide a better translation of the original story if the Babelfish one is not good enough.
A full translation might be overkill, but are there any interesting details in the original article that have been omitted from the English versions?
It all sounds plausible to me.
I search everything for such things almost every day, and have never ever hurt about that story nor Kjellerup.
And i live in Denmark!
I had an operation by the doctor on april 14th 2011 and today I asked him, and he confirmed the incident. By the way his name isn