Compensation for delayed diagnosis and treatment of necrotising fasciitis | Fieldfisher
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Case Study

Compensation for delayed diagnosis and treatment of necrotising fasciitis

Paul McNeil and Henry Kirwan recovered £500k for Ben after a bacterial infection caused traumatic injuries to his groin.

Ben had previously suffered from an episode of necrotising fasciitis, a rapidly progressing bacterial infection. The condition is a surgical emergency requiring urgent and aggressive treatment by antibiotics, surgical removal of the infected tissue and supportive therapy.

When Ben developed new symptoms, he was concerned that these be a sign of another infection. He attended the A&E at East Surrey Hospital where he explained his previous history of necrotising fasciitis, how his symptoms had spread quickly in a few hours, and that he was extremely worried that he was about to have a similar episode.

The hospital admitted Ben to a ward. He decided to keep notes during his admission as previously his treatment was delayed because his condition was not taken seriously. The plan was to treat him with antibiotics and morphine. Notwithstanding this his pain and swelling became worse. An ultrasound was ordered to investigate whether there might be signs of infection within his scrotum but the scan was not performed. Ben remained on the ward with severe swelling in his penis, painful testes, and abnormal blood test results indicating infection.

After five days he noticed the skin on his penis was discoloured, blistered and breaking away. He called the nurse who did not call for a doctor. It was not until later in the morning that he was taken to theatre for emergency removal of the infected tissue.

Ben lost most of his scrotum and penis. He needed several admissions to the Intensive Care Unit. His right testicle was moved into his right thigh where it since atrophied. He has multiple scars in the groin and area where his scrotum was. He has lost a substantial quantity of genital and inguinal skin. He passes urine via a line and is awaiting penile reconstructive surgery.

The East Surrey Hospital admitted their failure to take Ben to theatre days earlier was unacceptable and that had that mistake been avoided his penis and scrotum would have been saved. 

These failures took had a catastrophic effect on Ben's physical and psychological health. On obtaining the admission of liability from the hospital, Paul McNeil and Henry Kirwan obtained a series of interim payments which aided him in his recovery and provided financial stability in light of the fact he had lost his job. Over the course of the claim Paul and Henry arranged for Ben to be assessed by a raft of medical and therapy experts in order to ascertain the cost of his current and future needs. An accountancy expert also provided evidence in relation to Ben's lost earnings and pension arising out of the premature end to his career.

At a mediation with the lawyers acting for the East Surrey Hospital, it was agreed that Ben should receive a further £400,000 on top of the £100,000 already received. The payment is designed to meet the past and future costs of Ben's need for medical treatment including a multi-staged reconstruction procedure, his need for care, equipment and devices, his lost earnings and pension, and his pain and suffering.

"I have instructed Paul McNeil and Henry Kirwan at Fieldfisher twice now and both time have had had a successful  outcome. I have found their expertise and personal attention to be second to none."

Contact us

For further information about delayed diagnosis claims or delayed treatment claims please call Paul McNeil on 0330 460 6804 or email or or call Henry Kirwan on 0330 460 6766 or email


All enquiries are completely free of charge and we will investigate all funding options for you including no win no fee. Find out more about no win no fee claims.