Our Track Record
At Medical Negligence London our team has won countless numbers of medical negligence claims.
To give an idea of our track record, we describe below illustrative examples of cases that our firm has recently won on behalf of clients:
Failure to diagnose a genetic condition – settlement for approximately £200,000
This claim involved the failure to diagnose a genetic condition known as Thalassaemia Major during pregnancy, which resulted in our client’s daughter being born with Thalassaemia Major, a lifelong condition causing severe anaemia necessitating ongoing medical treatment, including regular blood transfusions, to stay alive.
The Hospital admitted that they were at fault in failing to make the proper diagnosis but argued that they should not have to pay significant damages because there was no evidence our client would have terminated the pregnancy if Thalassaemia Major had been diagnosed in the unborn child.
After a hard fought litigation and working closely with leading medical experts we were able to persuade the Hospital of the strength of our case and a settlement was reached in the region of £200,000.
Mis-diagnosis of medication side-effects – settlement for approximately £150,000
This claim involves the medical management of a deep vein thrombosis. The client was commenced on warfarin anticoagulation treatment for the thrombosis but, sadly, she developed a rare and severe reaction to warfarin, with warfarin induced skin necrosis. Despite skin damage and significant necrosis over the lower back and the upper lateral thigh becoming apparent the diagnosis was not made until 2 months later when the warfarin was eventually stopped. The client suffered considerable pain and although the areas of skin necrosis healed, the skin damage left extensive scarring. As the client had a predisposition to blood clotting, it was unlikely that she will be able to safely undergo plastic surgery in the future for revision of the scarring.
The Hospital argued there was no negligence on the basis that there was extensive bruising only when seen in the haematology clinic and therefore a diagnosis could not have been made. We argued, however, that the negligence was the failure to refer to a suitable specialist who would have been able to make the diagnosis and our claim was supported by expert evidence from a leading consultant. This was a particularly complex case. As well as obtaining evidence on both liability and causation from various disciplines (as the client had also attended her GP and the A&E department at her local hospital it had to be determined whether any liability rested with either of them), it was also necessary to obtain a report from a Plastic Surgeon on the extent of the client’s injury and to formulate a claim for care which had been necessary for the client’s recovery. After protracted negotiations a settlement for a significant amount was reached.
Intubation error of newborn leading to severe brain damage – settlement for about £7 million
This claim involves the neonatal management of a baby following her birth and, in particular, her initial ventilation. We were instructed by her mother to pursue a claim on her behalf. The baby was born at 30 weeks gestation. She was in good condition at delivery and did not require resuscitation and had good Apgar Scores. However, she was electively intubated and admitted to the Neonatal Unit at the hospital where she was born before being transferred to another Neonatal Unit. It was during this period of intubation that the baby was mechanically over-ventilated, washing carbon dioxide out of her lungs giving rise to a disturbance in her acid base balance (Ph) and a low level of carbon dioxide in the blood (hypocarbia). As a result, the baby suffered brain damage. It was concluded by the Neonatal expert that the baby has severe mixed quadriplegic cerebral palsy with both spastic and dyskinetic features. She also had significant learning difficulties and mild visual problems. She will remain physically impaired throughout her life and will always have significant learning difficulties. She will never be able to live independently and will require the presence of carers around the clock to undertake or assist her with activities for normal daily living. The Medical Negligence London team were able to achieve a settlement of approximately £7 million.
Fall at hospital bedside resulting in spinal fracture – damages in the region of £75,000 awarded
This claim involved negligent treatment whilst our client was recovering from spinal surgery and arises from a fall at her bedside whilst awaiting discharge home which caused a significant spinal fracture of the right femur which required operative fixation. In addition, following the fall, due to her lengthy stay in hospital she developed pressure sores on her right heel and right buttock. As a result of the fall she was confined to a wheelchair. However, the claim was complicated by the client’s previous medical history which included Pulmonary Sarcoidosis; Asthma; Pseudomonas colonisation chest; Obesity; Hypertension; Paroxysmal atrial fibrillation; Recurrent DVTs in left leg; Left total knee replacement; Open cholecystectomy and Hysterectomy.
Liability was admitted but the extent of the loss and damage remained in dispute. In view of the client’s pre-existing medical condition, the extent of the causal consequences from the fall had to be proven with both expert evidence and evidence from the client and her husband who she was heavily dependent upon. It had to be determined how much of an input the client’s husband was providing was actual care as opposed to emotional support and companionship including the share of the household duties which he undertook pre-accident in any event. It was therefore necessary to obtain a Care/Rehabilitation Report to assist with the assessment and involvement of the client’s husband in her care regime. Ultimately, the matter settled for approximately £75,000.
Surgical error – settlement for approximately £175,000
This claim involves the transection of the common hepatic duct during removal of the gall bladder (cholecystectomy surgery). Because of the transection life-saving major abdominal surgery was necessary and this was followed by by episodes of ascending cholangitis (which is an infection of the bile duct), increased risk to liver damage and psychological damage and depressive illness.
It was the psychological damage and depressive illness, in particular, which severely restricted the quality of life for the client. The extent of the psychological damage and depressive illness was difficult to assess as the client had a previous history of anxiety problems. Obtaining the correct expert evidence was essential for us to enable this aspect of the claim to proceed. We at Medical Negligence London instructed several medical experts of various disciplines to assess the extent of the client’s injuries, both physical and psychological, so that they could all be taken into account when assessing an appropriate amount of damages for settlement. Ultimately, the claim settled for approximately £175,000
Failure to diagnose – settlement in hundreds of thousands
This claim involves the failure to properly treat chronic hyponatremia (a condition where the blood level of sodium is too low). Because of the inadequate treatment our client developed osmotic demyelination syndrome which caused extra pontine myelinolysis resulting in permanent brain damage. The brain damage caused motor problems, with dysarthria (slurred speech) and problems with fine motor movements; reduced co-ordination; ataxic gait (loss of co-ordination) inducing difficulty with walking, running and balance; impairment of cognitive, memory and executive functioning; personality change with loss of self-esteem, loss of social confidence and lower tolerance, emotional ability and marked frustration over her physical restrictions.
Negligence in relation to the over rapid correction of the sodium level was admitted but causation (ie that there was a link between the negligence and the condition from which our client was suffering) was denied. In essence, the Hospital’s case was that our client had a severe illness on admission into hospital, including the hyponatraemia itself and that the outcome would not have been any different even if the negligence had not occurred. They argued that there were other causes for the brain damage including alcohol, drug use, nutritional or vitamin deficiency and bulmia. In order to maximise the prospect of success, the team at Medical Negligence London instructed several medical experts from different disciplines to establish the extent of the causal consequences of the brain damage, taking into account the client’s pre-existing condition and history, which made the claim difficult to assess.
Mis-reading a scan resulting in patient death – settlement for approximately £80,000
In this case our client’s mother was admitted to hospital with shortness of breath and chest pain. A pulmonary embolism was suspected and anticoagulation therapy was commenced. She was given a V/Q scan which reported there was a low likelihood of a pulmonary embolism and the therapy was stopped and she was discharged home. However, the chest pain continued and shortly after being discharged she died of a pulmonary embolism.
The expert evidence obtained by Medical Negligence London showed that the V/Q scan was misinterpreted and therefore the therapy should have continued. The matter was settled for approximately £80,000.
Surgical error – settlement for approximately £250,000
This claim concerned negligent treatment of a tumour near the frontal sinus cavity. Following surgery for removal of the cavity, our client was advised that there was a risk he would suffer a leak of cerebral spinal fluid from the dura of his nose. However, if this did occur, he was told, it would heal naturally or could be repaired by a simple procedure. He was also warned of a small risk of meningitis.
After the tumour was removed our client did suffer a leak of spinal fluid and was put on antibiotics. He then underwent multiple operations to try and repair the damage to the dura and stop the leak. However, these were unsuccessful and he was advised to let the leak repair naturally.
Our client subsequently suffered an epileptic fit and a piece of brain tissue became trapped in the dura. Craniotomy was performed to repair the hole and other remedial surgery was performed. This resulted in memory loss and concentration problems to the extent that he could not pursue his studies.
The expert engaged by Medical Negligence London’s team advised that the surgical procedure was carried out improperly. In sum, our client should have had a shunt fitted at the time of the initial surgery which would have prevented the cerebral fluid leak and all the subsequent surgical procedures. The matter settled shortly before trial for approximately £250,000.
Mis-diagnosis – settlement for in the region of £20,000
Our client suffered severe groin pain and attended A&E where he was referred to the urology department. He was diagnosed with an STD even though he had no previous sexual history or activity. He was given STD medication and anti inflamatories. The pain continued and he went to a different hospital where he was diagnosed as having testicular torsion (which is the twisting of the spermatic cord, that cuts off the supply of blood within the scrotum and to the testes). Because of the lapse of time, our client had to undergo significant surgery. The matter was settled for approximately £20,000.