Our client AAA attended the hospital five times with continuing severe headache before investigations led to a diagnosis of subarachnoid haemorrhage following rupture of a right sided brain aneurysm. She was eventually admitted for surgery but as she was about to be anaesthetised, suffered an additional bleed causing a large acute subdural haematoma and clot to her brain.
The Trust accepted that the haemorrhage should have been diagnosed sooner, and therefore the aneurysm coiled, preventing the second bleed to AAA’s brain occurring. However, it strongly contested the nature and extent of the injury suffered by the client and the consequences of that injury.
Jenny obtained evidence that confirmed AAA had suffered permanent brain damage as a result of the second bleed to her brain with cognitive impairment, including memory problems and physical and behavioural changes.
AAA also had disabling fatigue caused by her brain injury. She was no longer able to work and several years after the injury, was only able to return to part-time very structured but unskilled employment. She also struggled to care for her family, run her household and generally enjoy her previous life. As a result, she needed ongoing and lifetime support.
The defendants argued that she had not suffered from any cognitive impairment – certainly none requiring care and support – and disputed that she had suffered brain damage that could explain dysexecutive function or significant behavioural changes. They also disagreed that AAA lacked mental capacity to manage her own affairs.
Shortly before trial, a lump sum settlement of £1.218m was agreed, with annual payments for care and case management until retirement at 65 and thereafter £40,000 per year for life, a total settlement worth £3.4m. Throughout the case, Jenny achieved interim payments to fund vital support and therapies, including occupational psychology to support AAA’s placement at work.
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