Dutch ex-neurologist jailed for wrong diagnoses

February 11, 2014

A Dutch ex-neurologist was sentenced to three years in jail on Tuesday for a series of wrong diagnoses that led to the suicide of a patient, in the first case of its kind in the country.

Ernst Jansen, 68, "has been found guilty of intentionally compromising the health of eight patients," between 1997 and 2003, the Almelo district court said in a statement.

"He wrongly diagnosed the eight patients and used the wrong treatments," the court added.

It said Jansen wrongly diagnosed serious diseases such as Alzheimer's, multiple sclerosis and atrophy.

In one case a patient was diagnosed with and confined to a wheelchair when he was actually suffering from a hernia, Dutch media reported.

In another, the former specialist wrongly told a patient she was in the final stages of two terminal diseases and therefore she committed suicide, the court said.

"The is convinced the patient died as a result of her treatment," it said.

Prosecutors wanted a six-year sentence in a case that made headlines in the country and has been described as the "biggest of its kind," by Dutch media.

"It is the first time a doctor has been sent to for mistakes made in diagnosing ," Dutch news agency ANP reported.

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