£1 million compensation after A&E misdiagnosis

A 60 year old man, was awarded £1m in medical negligence compensation after he suffered a ruptured spleen and subsequent brain injury in June 2004. He was left with permanent cognitive impairments which affected his ability to continue working as a QC and a part-time recorder.

Accident and emergency negligence

On 16 June 2004 the man attended the A&E department of the defendant hospital, after falling about 12 feet from a 1st floor window. He was diagnosed as having sprained his ankle and was discharged home. Over the following few hours the man’s condition deteriorated and he returned to the hospital with a raised pulse and falling blood pressure. He was admitted and monitored and it was planned that an abdominal ultrasound would be performed the next morning. However, his condition further deteriorated overnight, his blood pressure dropped and he suffered prolonged hypoxia. He was resuscitated and taken urgently to theatre where 6 litres of blood were removed from his abdomen and he underwent a splenectomy (removal of the spleen). He recovered from surgery but suffered cognitive impairments.

Mis-diagnosis negligence claim

A claim was brought against the hospital, alleging that it was negligent in failing to consider and diagnose intra-abdominal trauma on both occasions when the man attended. It was alleged that if the man had been properly investigated an urgent abdominal CT scan would have been undertaken, which would have shown that his spleen had ruptured. An urgent splenectomy would then have been carried out and he would not have suffered a profound hypotensive episode which it was alleged had caused the man to suffer a hypoxic ischaemic brain injury.

The hospital admitted liability.

The service was personal, professional and considered. I was treated so kindly and in the end I knew that not only had I found the right organisation but also the right person.

Boyes Turner client

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