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Hospital loses frozen sperm – twice
A HOSPITAL in Madrid has once again lost a man's sperm which he had frozen, meaning he cannot now have children of his own.
The man in question decided to freeze his sperm when he was 32, back in 2003, after being diagnosed with Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma by a hospital in Burgos, meaning he would need radiotherapy and chemotherapy.
The aggressive treatment, which he underwent at Madrid's Puerta de Hierro Hospital, carried a high risk of leaving him infertile, but it cured his cancer completely.
Now, aged nearly 47, he was hoping to start a family, and with seven samples of sperm frozen at Madrid's Ramón y Cajal Hospital, looked as though he would have plenty of chances to do so.
He and his partner contacted the hospital in 2017 to start fertility treatment, having been contacted regularly until then to confirm the condition of his samples held.
But the couple received an unexpected call asking them to attend the hospital for an urgent meeting and, once there, were told that 'an irreparable sperm-bank management error' meant his semen could not be found.
This means the would-be father cannot have children of his own, since the cancer treatment in 2003 did, as oncologists predicted at the time, leave him infertile.
The Ramón y Cajal Hospital came under fire just a few months ago when another patient, Javier, who had frozen his sperm 16 years previously, was told his samples had been 'inexplicably lost'.
According to the hospital, they had 'searched all the tanks and not found' the samples, and 'did not know what had happened to them'.
Javier demanded copies of his entire medical history, but the Ramón y Cajal said it had no records of his being treated there – despite the patient's having gone through various tests to determine the quality of his semen.
The only solution the hospital was able to offer both men was for them to go to the front of the queue for fertility treatment using donor sperm.
Their lawyers, Javier de la Peña and Isabel Bonilla from Lex Abogacía say that as the hospital has been unable to provide explanations, along with the possibility of the samples having been destroyed or mislaid, there is a 'very real likelihood' that the frozen sperm was used by mistake, in both cases, with another couple without the consent of any of the parties involved, and that Javier's and the latest man's biological children have already been born without their knowledge – and without there ever being any chance of finding out.
Both men are suing the hospital for €200,000 each.
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