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Case Study

Croydon University Hospital pay out significant compensation after hospital fail to inform client of tumour on scans

Mark Bowman acted for John in a clinical negligence claim against Croydon University Hospital. John had suffered an accident at work in March 2011 when he badly twisted his left knee

 On 17 November 2011 John underwent surgery at Croydon University Hospital. A number of days following surgery he started to suffer from pain in his knee. He returned to hospital and was diagnosed as suffering from a deep vein thrombosis and pulmonary emboli. Over the course of the next year John continued to suffer from pain in his knee as well as chest pain and shortness of breath. He required multiple admissions to hospital and was treated with warfarin in order to manage his INR levels. In spite of receiving such treatment John's condition failed to get better, in fact he continued to deteriorate.

Concerned about his deterioration John requested a copy of his medical records. In the meantime he was referred to St Thomas' Hospital for a second opinion.

In early December 2012, John received his medical records and was alarmed to see that recorded in the reports of three CT pulmonary angiograms that had been performed between January and May 2012 were references to a thymic cyst. John had never been told about such a finding and had never received treatment for such a condition. His anti-coagulation regime was immediately stopped, pending further investigations.

John's care was transferred to St Thomas' Hospital where they confirmed that John had never suffered from pulmonary emboli and he was advised to undergo surgery to remove the thymic cyst.

Instructions were received from John to investigate a claim against Croydon University Hospital. Expert reports were obtained from a radiologist, haematologist, endocrinologist and cardiologist. On John's behalf, it was alleged that he had never suffered from pulmonary emboli and he should not have received treatment for such a condition from May 2012 onwards, thereby saving him over 6 months of anti-coagulation treatment. In addition, the findings of a thymic cyst from as early as January 2012 should have led to a prompt referral to the thoracic surgery team, and an operation to remove the cyst in the second quarter of 2012.

Following receipt of a Letter of Claim, the NHSLA admitted liability, and shortly thereafter agreed to pay John £25,000 to compensate him for the shock, anxiety and concern he experienced at the end of 2012 when he learnt that a thymic cyst was present and had been identified but not acted on since January 2012, as well as for him having to comply with an onerous and painful anti-coagulation regime from May 2012.

John said:

"I had previously instructed Mark Bowman in my personal injury claim and instructing him in my clinical negligence claim was a simple informed choice. We worked closely with specialist medical experts to secure compensation. My clinical disablement is permanent and lifelong and the casework was equally exhausting taking years. I should have read more medical legal outcomes as my expectations failed to be realised. Mark Bowman is a seasoned professional and would be my only choice."

Contact us

For further information about hospital negligence claims and medical negligence claims, please call Mark Bowman on 020 7861 4043 or email mark.bowman@fieldfisher.com.

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