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June 6, 2011

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Hospital bid to save 'fake joint' youth's leg

A 17-YEAR-OLD faces losing his leg through infection after being fitted with a counterfeit artificial joint at a city hospital.

Another hospital has stepped in to save it.

The parents of the teenager, Hu Bin, are still negotiating with Shanghai No. 6 People's Hospital after their son was left with a severe infection following artificial joint replacement surgery in January last year.

A photograph of Hu's infected right leg, with part of the artificial joint protruding from the flesh, was uploaded onto microblogging site weibo, creating a stir among web users and the media.

Hu's father, who asked not to be named, said Shanghai No.6 People's Hospital offered to amputate the limb free of charge.

When Hu's family refused to allow that, they were given two options: 200,000 yuan (US$30,864) compensation or reimbursement on treatment in other hospitals.

"I chose the second one and will transfer Hu Bin to Ruijin Hospital on Tuesday," the father said. "But the issue is far from over."

Hu's father told Shanghai Daily the amputation suggestion was unacceptable. "Shanghai No.6 People's Hospital just wanted to get rid of my son forever instead of trying to save his leg," he said.

The father, a farmer from Jiangxi Province, said treatment for his son cost 400,000 yuan, including 113,000 yuan on the artificial joint.

However Hu Bin started to suffer pain four months later.

"I took his medical report to Shanghai No. 6, where doctors told me it was rejection and would recover by itself."

"But my son didn't get better, instead the leg became even worse," said Hu's father.

"Doctors in Shanghai's Ruijin Hospital said it is a typical viral infection, which was serious due to a delay in treatment."

Hu's father said he then discovered the "German" artificial knee joint was a fake, after taking its registration documents to Shanghai Food and Drug Administration.

Shanghai No.6 People's Hospital officials said they are investigating the case.


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