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Written by Susan Brown

Boyes Turner’s cancer negligence specialists secured an £800,000 settlement for a young woman left with permanent pain, and physical and psychological injuries after GP and hospital delays in treatment for cervical cancer.

Our client, a young woman, developed symptoms, including vaginal bleeding. She attended her GP surgery for her cervical smear test and reported symptoms including discharge and cramping pains. The GP recorded a history suggestive of invasive cervical cancer but failed to refer our client to a specialist gynaecological clinic at this appointment or at a further appointment two weeks later.

The smear test was reported approximately two and half months later. This suggested that there were borderline changes and that other investigations should be arranged. Despite this result and a further visit from our client, the  GP took no action.

More than three and a half months after the smear test, our client was finally referred to hospital  by another GP at the same practice. The referral was marked non-urgent, and was made to the wrong clinic, so our client had to wait a further two months for a colposcopy clinic appointment. However, before she could attend the appointment, she collapsed at home after heavy bleeding. She was taken to A&E, where she was found to have a tumour, and was diagnosed with stage IIB cervical cancer.

By the time her diagnosis was made, the tumour was too extensive for surgery. Our client underwent intensive chemo-radiotherapy which destroyed her ovaries. She was left needing HRT treatment. The chemo-radiotherapy also caused her to suffer permanent, debilitating pelvic pain, for which she needs morphine. She is unable to work. In addition to her physical injuries, our client has suffered a psychological injury.

We pursued our client’s claim against her GP and the hospital. Both defendants denied responsibility for our client’s injury. We issued court proceedings, but when experts’ reports were exchanged, it became clear that the defendant's experts agreed with our client's claim, in all respects except her prognosis. We obtained a liability judgment for our client and sought further expert evidence to value her claim. The case concluded with a negotiated out-of-court settlement for our client of £800,000.

If you have suffered a serious injury or disability as a result of medical negligence and would like to find out more about making a claim, you can talk to one of our specialist solicitors, free and confidentially, by contacting us here.