Medical Negligence Case Summary – Thompson & Co. Solicitors
We recently recovered ÂŁ17,500 compensation for Mrs A in relation to a medical negligence claim arising out of her late husband’s hospital treatment.
Mr A developed a headache above his right eye which worsened over two days. He attended his local Walk in Centre where the Doctor noted his headache pain was 10/10 and he had been muddled.
He was referred straight to the A&E Department at the Hospital. He was admitted to hospital but no CT scan or neurologist assessment was carried out. He was discharged home 2 days later.
He continued to suffer confusion and headaches over the following days and fell a number of times.
5 days after his discharge from hospital Mr A collapsed in his home and was taken by emergency ambulance to hospital. A CT scan was undertaken which showed he had suffered intracranial artery aneurysm and a small sentinel intracranial haemorrhage;
Sadly nothing could be done to save him and he died in hospital.
We obtained Mr A’s medical records and sought advice from experts in Accident & Emergency Medicine and Neurology.
A letter of claim was then sent to the hospital alleging that the hospital was negligent in that they:
- failed on admission to the Hospital to take a full, comprehensive and accurate history of Mr A’s condition and symptoms;
- failed to recognise on admission that a 10/10 headache was an indication for a mandatory CT scan of the head and failed to carry out a CT scan;
- failed to undertake any neurological examination of Mr A during the first 2 days of his initial admission to hospital.
- failed to diagnose that, at that time of his first admission to hospital, Mr A was suffering from an intracranial artery aneurysm and a small sentinel intracranial haemorrhage;
It was alleged that had appropriate adequate investigations been carried out when Mr A was initially admitted to hospital the aneurysm and haemorrhage would have been identified and he would have had surgery to repair this, preventing his death.
While the hospital admitted that there was a failure to perform neurological tests and a undertake a CT scan they denied that had these been done the outcome for Mr A would have been different and his death would have been prevented.
As a result of the hospital’s denial we issued Court Proceedings and obtained. Evidence from:
- a Consultant in Emergency Medicine
- a Consultant Physician
- a Consultant Neurosurgeon
- a Consultant Neuroradiologist
The hospital obtained medical evidence from similar experts.
The experts agreed that it was likely that there were 2 possible causes of Mr A’s symptoms when he initially attended hospital:
- a small subarachnoid haemorrhage from an aneurysm; or
- an expanding but unruptured artery aneurysm.
The experts agreed that if the Court decided Mr A was not suffering a haemorrhage when he first attended hospital then any CT scan that had been carried out would have looked normal and the aneurysm would not have been spotted and treated in time to prevent the fatal bleed.
If however the court decided that he was suffering a haemorrhage when he first attended hospital then the haemorrhage would have been picked up on CT scan, the aneurysm would have been identified and treatment would then have been given that would have prevented Mr A’s death.
Following negotiations with the hospital’s solicitors a settlement of ÂŁ17,500 was agreed without the claim going to a trial.