- The Washington Times - Wednesday, May 7, 2014

A Liverpool hospital has apologized “unreservedly” after accidentally giving a man a vasectomy while he was under the knife for a minor urological operation.

Doctors have tried to reverse the epic mistake, but official figures show that the success rate of a vasectomy reversal is only about 55 percent, the Telegraph reported. It’s a mistake the hospital may have to pay for dearly.

The victim, who has not been identified, now has to anxiously wait to find out if he’ll ever be able to have children.

The medical director at Royal Liverpool Hospital said the hospital has “apologized unreservedly” to the patient and is “offering him our full support.”

“This is a serious incident and we are investigating this fully to understand why it occurred and how we can ensure it does not happen again,” Dr. Peter Williams told the paper.

The hospital admitted to the mistake during a National Health Service Trust board meeting. Chief executive Aidan Kehoe said it appeared the World Health Organization’s surgical safety checklist had not been followed during the operation.

Clinical negligence attorney Ian Cohen said the mistake could cost the trust a six-figure sum.

“This is a truly shocking and worrying case,” he told the Telegraph. “From what we know there has been a catastrophic breakdown in procedure, as simple checks designed to ensure the correct operation is carried out on the right patient seem to have failed.

“In a worst-case scenario — sterility in a younger man with no children — the trust might be liable for a figure in excess of £100,000 in compensation,” he said.