A pensioner is dying after GPs failed to diagnose a huge tumour.

John Downing visited doctors 13 times before terminal bowel cancer was discovered. Doctors have since said he could have been cured if diagnosed sooner.

The Tasman 76-year-old is receiving chemotherapy at Nelson Hospital which has shrunk the inoperable bowel tumour.

But cancer cells had already spread to his lungs and liver when the disease was diagnosed in April last year.

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His medical clinic has apologised to him for its failings and promised to do better.

Downing is speaking out to encourage people to seek a second opinion if

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