John Brandrick, 62, was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer two years ago and told that he would probably die within a year.
He quit his job, sold or gave away nearly all his possessions, stopped paying his mortgage and spent his savings dining out and going on holiday.
Brandrick was left with little more than the black suit, white shirt and red tie that he had planned to be buried in when it emerged a year later that his suspected "tumor" was no more than a non-life threatening inflammation of the pancreas.
"When they tell you you've got a limited time and everything, you do enjoy life," Brandrick, from
"I'm really pleased that I've got a second chance in life... but if you haven't got no money after all this, which is my fault -- I spent it all -- they should pay something back."
If he can't get compensation, he is considering selling his house or suing the hospital that diagnosed him. The hospital has said that while it sympathizes with Brandrick, a review of his case showed no different diagnosis would have been made.