Cruise Passenger Airlifted Against His Wishes Amid Misdiagnosis Controversy, Stranded Far from Home

Cruise Passenger Airlifted Against His Wishes Amid Misdiagnosis Controversy, Stranded Far from Home

…By Alan Peterson for TDPel Media.

Suspected Infection Leads to Unplanned Airlift

A cruise ship passenger, Stephen Cassidy, was airlifted off a cruise against his wishes after the ship’s doctor suspected he had an infection in his hip.


Mr. Cassidy, 60, later discovered that there was “no sign” of an infection, but rather a pulled muscle, as conveyed by the hospital medics.

The unexpected airlift left him stranded in Shetland, approximately 800 miles away from home, causing distress and feelings of imprisonment.

Frustration and Missed Celebrations

The experience not only left Mr. Cassidy feeling panicked and angry but also caused him to miss celebrating his wife’s birthday.

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Despite requesting permission to pack his own bag before departing the ship’s medical center, he was denied and described feeling confined like a prisoner.

According to Mr. Cassidy, the ship’s doctor had suggested infection based on one of the blood tests conducted.

Expensive Cruise Cut Short Due to Misdiagnosis

Stephen and his wife Carol had paid £3,598 for a two-week cruise to Norway with Princess Cruises to celebrate her 60th birthday and their 40th wedding anniversary.


However, halfway through the trip, Mr. Cassidy began experiencing pain in his left thigh.

Given his previous hip replacement on that side, he consulted the ship’s doctor.

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Despite subsequent IV treatment and the initial plan to seek medical assistance in Iceland, the ship was unable to dock, leading to an online consultation with an orthopedic surgeon.

Unfortunate Airlift and Misdiagnosis

On May 24, Stephen claims he was asked his weight by nurses, and his wife was instructed to pack his bag.

However, when he requested to pack it himself, he was denied permission and unable to leave the medical center.

Later, he was placed in a wheelchair and airlifted via helicopter, along with two other unwell passengers, to Lerwick for assessment at Gilbert Bain hospital.

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To Mr. Cassidy’s frustration, the assessment revealed no signs of infection, indicating a pulled muscle instead.

Financial Consequences and Compensation

As a result of the ordeal, Mr. Cassidy had to pay £870 for flights back home and an overnight hotel stay.


He believes Princess Cruises should cover these costs, especially considering his pre-existing conditions and the impact on future travel insurance coverage.

The cruise company, Princess Cruises, has been contacted for comment, but a spokesperson reportedly dismissed the allegations as “without merit.”

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