A truck driver in Kentucky, USA, who booked himself in for a routine circumcision, woke up after surgery to find the entire organ had been removed without his consent.
Phillip Seaton, 64, had entrusted his manhood to Dr John Patterson at the Jewish Hospital in Louisville, Kentucky, in October 2007.
But during surgery, the doctor discovered that Mr Seaton was suffering from a rare and potentially fatal strain of penile cancer known as squamous cell carcinoma.
Dr Patterson, believing the cancer to be life-threatening, decided that the immediate removal of a portion of the penis was necessary.
He claimed that later, another doctor lopped off the remaining part of the penis.
Mr Seaton described his reaction on waking up after surgery. He said: "I pulled the dressing down, and I didn't see nothing. Then I came out of the restroom and I said I'm getting the hell out of this damn hospital."
He and his wife have already sued the hospital and received money in an out-of-court settlement, but now the couple are bringing a civil case against Dr Patterson for "loss of service, love and affection".
Mr Seaton's lawyer Kevin George claimed that immediate amputation was not essential and that the patient should have been informed beforehand, and allowed to gain a second opinion.
Mr George said: "He's angry because Dr Patterson took off his penis without asking; without giving him a choice; without giving him the opportunity to check around and talk to other people."
But Dr Patterson said: "What I saw was not a penis. What I saw was cancer."
Dr Patterson asserted that Mr Seaton signed pre-surgery forms that would authorise the doctor to perform any actions that might be necessary if problems arose.
Mr Seaton's lawyer claimed that his client is unable to read or write.
Clay Robinson, Dr Patterson's lawyer, stated: "Mr Seaton is here today, able to be in this courtroom... because John Patterson saved his life."
The case continues.
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