FAILURE TO REMOVE ALL SUTURES RESULTED IN BREACH OF DUTY
We were instructed by DG who on 6 April 2017 attended the Emergency Department at the Defendant Hospital having cut his right middle finger when he fell on a wine glass. On examination a 1 cm deep laceration to the base of the proximal phalanx of the middle finger was found. A partial laceration of the extensor tendon was seen on X Ray, and skin sutures were placed, and the Claimant was referred to the Hand Clinic.
The Claimant was reviewed in the Hand Clinic on 10 April 2017. The wound was explored under local anaesthetic on the 13 April 2017 when a 20% division of the extensor tendon was seen and repaired. The Claimant was subsequently provided with antibiotics due to some discharge around the wound.
On 19 April 2017 it was recorded that the wound looked satisfactory and to hold off from therapy at the present time but to continue with antibiotics. The sutures were purportedly removed on 26 April 2017 and no evidence of infection was found.
He was referred to hand therapy for mobilisation. On 13 May 2017 the Claimant returned to the Emergency Department with a possible infection to his right middle finger. He was reviewed on the Orthopaedic Ward the following morning when a retained suture knot was discovered and removed. The Claimant re-attended the Emergency Department on the 31 May 2017 with a further infection in his finger. Another retained suture was identified, and this was removed.
It was our case that the sutures should have been removed on the 26 April 2017and/or the 13 May and the failure to remove all of the sutures was a breach of duty. It was not until 31 May 2017 when the finger had become infected (due to the retained suture) that the final suture was removed. A letter of Claim was sent to the Defendants and they responded with an offer of £2000 which the client accepted.
DAMAGES SECURED FOR LOSS OF SPLEEN
Our client was admitted to hospital with upper abdominal pain, but the hospital staff wrongly diagnosed her with a pulmonary embolus when she was in fact suffering from a bleed in her spleen, which was contained within the splenic capsule. She was therefore wrongly treated with blood-thinning drugs, which made her condition worse, and several further errors were made in her treatment that led to a failure to diagnose the bleeding until her spleen ruptured and she required an emergency splenectomy. The medical issues in the case were extremely convoluted, and the case was listed for a seven-day Trial in the High Court, but we settled the case shortly before the Trial.
DAMAGES OBTAINED FOR PRESSURE SORE INJURIES
We acted for the family of a man who sustained a fracture to his shoulder, and although he was treated in hospital and his arm put in a plaster cast he was then “lost to follow-up”. The gentleman’s arm therefore remained in the cast for far too long, and when the mistake was eventually recognised and the cast removed he had sustained serious pressure sore injuries to his shoulder and elbow. Sadly, he never fully recovered from his injuries and he died within a few months, but we were able to settle the claim on behalf of his Estate.
DAMAGES FOR DELAY IN TREATING BURNS
Our team recently settled a case arising from a negligent delay in treating burns suffered by our client following a cooking accident at home. Her injuries were mistakenly diagnosed as minor and treated accordingly for almost a fortnight, whereas she had in fact suffered serious injuries that should have been treated at a specialist burns unit. We obtained evidence from medical experts in respect of her physical injuries, and although she was initially reluctant to investigate the impact of the events in question on her from a psychological perspective, as she had been “blocking out” the events in question, upon further discussion she agreed to explore her psychological injuries, and we were able to secure compensation for both her physical injuries and counselling costs.
FAILIURE TO ASSESS AND TREAT – SIX FIGURE AWARD
Six figure award for damages secured following a medical negligence claim against a GP for failing to properly assess and treat a patient, resulting in her tragic death. The claim was brought on behalf of her dependant’s, including her infant child.
FOUR-FIGURE SETTLEMENT FOR INJURED CHEERLEADER
We recovered damages for a young lady who injured her ankle whilst cheerleading. X-rays taken at her local hospital showed a fracture but this was mistakenly reported as showing no abnormality and she was discharged, and later referred for aggressive physiotherapy. Unhappy with her NHS treatment, she paid for a private appointment with a consultant who identified the fracture and told her it should have been repaired surgically. She had to pay for the operation privately at a cost of several thousand pounds to avoid further delay, as this was now four months after the original accident. The Defendant’s negligence exacerbated her pain and suffering and delayed her recovery significantly, and we successfully recovered compensation to reflect this, including the costs of her surgery.
NEGLIGENT TREATING OF BROKEN LEG
We successfully pursued a claim for a young man who suffered a broken leg whilst playing rugby, and was taken to his local hospital for surgical repair. He had been seen by a vascular surgeon some months previously at the same hospital for a varicose vein in his leg, but although they diagnosed the problem and identified that the vein needed to be removed, the hospital team failed to follow this up. Following the fracture repair he developed a serious wound infection that lasted for four years and caused significant disruption to his life, until his treating consultant at another hospital recognised the vascular issue, removed the vein and the wound healed promptly. This was a complicated claim but we secured a significant settlement at a relatively early stage of the litigation.
FAILURE TO DIAGNOSE INTERNAL BLEEDING DUE TO LACK OF CONSULTANT COVER AT WEEKENDS
We settled a tragic case arising from the death of a gentleman who was admitted to hospital on a Saturday afternoon by ambulance after collapsing at home. Despite his Hb levels continuing to fall very rapidly, no action was taken and no input was sought from the Gastroenterology Team as there was no Consultant cover at weekends, and sadly he collapsed again and passed away in the early hours Monday morning. We secured a settlement on behalf of the gentleman’s Estate and a dependency claim for his widow.
PULMONARY HYPERTENSION DAMAGES – SIX FIGURES
We secured a six figure damages settlement for a client who suffered from pulmonary hypertension as a result of an undiagnosed pulmonary embolism.
FAILURE TO X-RAY AND DIAGNOSE FACIAL FRACTURES – FIVE FIGURE SETTLEMENT
We settled a claim arising from a failure to diagnose and treat a blow-out fracture of our client’s orbital floor. She had collapsed at home and injured her face, and was taken to the nearest A&E Department, but despite both the ambulance crew querying her head injury on admission, and our client complaining of pain in her face, double vision and her left eye having swollen shut, there were no investigations of the facial injury itself and, crucially, no x-rays were undertaken, and she was discharged home. Her symptoms did not improve and she was eventually referred to a different hospital by her GP a month later, where an x-ray was undertaken and revealed a fracture of her orbital floor, and her eye had sunk into the gap caused by the fracture. She underwent urgent surgery to repair the fracture but unfortunately, due to the delay in diagnosis, she has been left with permanent double vision.
NEGLIGENT FAILURE BY GP AND HOSPITAL TO IDENTIFY STRANGULATED HERNIA LEADING TO DEATH – FIVE FIGURE SETTLEMENT
We settled a fatal claim for five figure damages arising from the death of a gentleman who tragically died in Queen’s Hospital, Romford. He was suffering from a strangulated hernia but, despite being seen at home by his registered GP and then admitted to hospital for several days, none of the practitioners involved in his care conducted a proper physical examination that would have revealed the hernia. Sadly, by the time it was discovered and he underwent surgery his life could not be saved.
SKIN DAMAGE FOLLOWING KNEE SURGERY – FIVE FIGURE SETTLEMENT
We settled a case on behalf of a client who sustained an injury following knee surgery. The injury was caused by a negligently placed tourniquet which allowed the antiseptic fluid, used to sterilise the skin, to seep under the cuff of the tourniquet and cause a burn-type injury which took several months to heal.
DELAY IN DIAGNOSING AND TREATING LIVER CANCER – £145,000
Attwaters Jameson Hill’s Medical Negligence team settled a claim relating to a negligent delay in diagnosing and treating liver cancer (including providing a liver transplant) resulting in the death of our client’s husband, for damages of £145,000.
DELAY IN DIAGNOSIS OF KLEBSIELLA INFECTION CAUSING LOSS OF SIGHT AND EYE – FIVE FIGURE SETTLEMENT
Attwaters Jameson Hill’s Medical Negligence team secured a five figure settlement for a client where the hospital was negligent in delaying the diagnosis and treatment of Klebsiella infection which caused the loss of his left eye.
DELAYED DIAGNOSIS LEADING TO AMPUTATION – £500,000
Attwaters Jameson Hill’s Medical Negligence team settled a claim against The Princess Alexandra Hospital NHS Trust for £500,000 for a client who had a below the knee amputation because the Princess Alexandra Hospital staff, in Harlow, Essex, failed to recognize that the pain he had in his leg was caused by vascular problems. If this had been recognized in time, as it should have been, he would have had surgery which would have saved his leg.
DELAY IN EMERGENCY SURGERY – FIVE FIGURE SETTLEMENT
Attwaters Jameson Hill’s Medical Negligence team settled a case for a client who underwent a routine operation but subsequently suffered excessive bleeding which was not recognised or treated for a number of hours resulting in a delay in performing emergency remedial surgery.
DELAY IN DIAGNOSIS AND TREATMENT OF SCAPHOID FRACTURE – FIVE FIGURE SETTLEMENT
Attwaters Jameson Hill’s Medical Negligence team settled a case against Ashford & St Peter’s Hospitals NHS Trust for five figure damages where there was a 3 month delay in diagnosing and treating a scaphoid fracture.
DELAYED DIAGNOSIS OF BOWEL PERFORATION RESULTING IN DEATH – FIVE FIGURE DAMAGES
Attwaters Jameson Hill’s Medical Negligence team settled a case on behalf of the Estate of a lady who died after bowel surgery. Her bowel was perforated during the procedure but this was not picked up by the medical team for several days, by which time sadly she could not be saved. The case was brought by the deceased’s daughter.
FATALITY – DELAY IN DIAGNOSIS OF LUNG CANCER – £165,000
Attwaters Jameson Hill’s Medical Negligence team settled a case for £165,000 where we were acting on behalf of the Estate of the deceased where there was a significant delay in diagnosing the lung cancer by which time no treatment was available and the patient died. Had the diagnosis been made when it should have been, she would have received successful treatment and survived.
DELAY IN INVESTIGATING, DIAGNOSING AND TREATING SCAPHOID FRACTURE – FIVE FIGURE SETTLEMENT
Attwaters Jameson Hill’s Medical Negligence team settled a case our client for five figure damages where there was a 2 year delay in investigating, diagnosing and treating our client’s scaphoid fracture which was clearly visible on the original x-ray taken in Accident and Emergency 2 years prior to the actual diagnosis. This delay significantly affected the client’s professional career as a motocross rider and their prospects of employment in the future.
DELAY IN SURGERY – FIVE FIGURE SETTLEMENT
Attwaters Jameson Hill’s Medical Negligence team obtained a five figure damages compensation for our client relating to delay in surgery to his fractured arm of some months. This delay was caused by an attempt at conservative treatment, initially, rather than surgery, and further delay was caused by the decision by the surgeon not to operate as our client was a smoker. We argued that it was certainly not appropriate to delay surgery because he was a smoker.
DELAY IN DETECTING MALIGNANT MELANOMA – FIVE FIGURE SETTLEMENT
Attwaters Jameson Hill’s Medical Negligence team obtained a five figure settlement for a client whose GP surgery told her that her biopsy result was “fine” , when in fact she had a malignant melanoma and needed more surgery. When the mistake was picked up by chance nearly a year later, our client was told that her chances of survival were much less than they would have been, because of the delay in treating the cancer. Luckily she did have successful surgery later and is now fit and well but she endured a very worrying few years after her treatment. The GP practice tightened up its procedures and our client received a full apology from her doctors.
FAILURE TO ATTEND TO STROKE VICTIM – A FIVE FIGURE SETTLEMENT
Our client’s husband died as a result of a stroke. The Duty Emergency Doctor had refused to visit him at home and the Ambulance Service had failed, subsequently, to take him into hospital. As a result of these failings there was significant delay in him receiving treatment as a result of which he died leaving a widow and a young son. Attwaters Jameson Hill’s Medical Negligence team achieved a settlement subsequently approved by the Court.
FAILURE TO INVESTIGATE SEVERE BACK PROBLEM – £700,000
Attwaters Jameson Hill’s Medical Negligence team successfully concluded a case in which the Claimant first consulted the firm just before the limitation period was due to expire. His claim was against his GP and hospital in relation to delay in his severe back problem being investigated adequately. Proceedings had to be issued against both Defendants and the claim was settled for damages of over £700,000. The case was concluded 2.5 years from start to finish.
MISDIAGNOSIS OF CANCER We recently secured damages of £350,000 for a client who was incorrectly diagnosed with cancer. As a result of the misdiagnosis she underwent extensive, gruelling chemotherapy and radiotherapy that has left her permanently incapacitated. Two years after the initial diagnosis further tests were undertaken which showed that the diagnosis was incorrect and the highly invasive treatment had been completely unnecessary.
SETTLEMENT ACHIEVED FOR THE WIDOWER OF A STROKE PATIENT WHO DIED PREMATURELY AS A RESULT OF MEDICAL NEGLIGENCE – £110,000.00