Highest award for late diagnosis of hip dysplasia for 11-year-old | Fieldfisher
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Case Study

Highest award for late diagnosis of hip dysplasia for 11-year-old

Will Jones recently settled a claim for £1.5m for a young girl with dramatically reduced mobility because the hip dysplasia she was born with was not diagnosed until she was seven.

The girl was seen at the Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital NHS Trust in 2016 following a GP referral due to concerns about a developing limp and pain in her right hip. 

She was seen by a consultant paediatrician at the hospital who performed a brief physical examination but did not record any leg length discrepancy or hip abnormality and did not arrange an X-ray. 

Over the next four years, the girl's condition gradually worsened: she fell over frequently, complained of increasing pain, skipped rather than walked and developed a severe limp. 

Following these symptoms being raised with the GP, the girls was referred to Luton and Dunstable Hospital in May 2020 and imaging confirmed right-sided hip dysplasia. She was seven years old at the time of diagnosis. 

The claimant underwent two complex corrective surgeries, in September and October 2020. Unfortunately, the hip re-dislocated and revision surgery took place in April 2022. 

Due to the very late diagnosis, the girl now has to live with significantly reduced mobility and relies on a wheelchair for long walks and at school. She will require a primary hip replacement at around age 25, and three revision surgeries during the course of her life. 

The defendant trust made an early admission of liability – it was accepted that an X-ray should have been arranged in April 2016 and that, had that X-ray taken place, hip dysplasia would have been diagnosed earlier and the outcome would have been better. 

What followed was a careful consideration of the value of the claim, involving a comparison of what would have been the outcome but for the defendant's negligence, and what the outcome will be.

The claimant accepted that there would have been a need for surgery during childhood, but it would have been less complicated and had a better outcome. She would have required hip replacement surgery eventually, but much later than she will now need it and there would have been two hip replacement surgeries rather than four. 

The Court recently approved a settlement of £1.5m for the claimant. the amount that was previously agreed between the parties.

The money includes £55k for the parents for the past care and support they had provided to their daughter, with the bulk of the award to provide for surgery/medical, chiropody, occupational therapy, physiotherapy, care and support, extra travel expenses, domestic assistance, and loss of earnings because she will be at a disadvantage in the labour market.

Following settlement, the family said:

'Will Jones… was with us every step of the way, he made it easy for us to understand. He was so reassuring and it was a great comfort as it was a distressing time for our family. He was kind and compassionate. He brought us to justice for our child. Nothing else to say apart from he is fabulous.'

'Thank you really and truly from the bottom of my heart. You really have reassured me all the way. Will, you are one of a kind.'

Contact us

For further information about hip dysplasia claims, please call Will Jones on 0330 460 6822 or email will.jones@fieldfisher.com.


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.

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Hip Dysplasia Claims