MP who lost arms and legs campaigns for early recognition of sepsis | Fieldfisher
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MP who lost arms and legs campaigns for early recognition of sepsis

Jane Weakley

Tory MP Craig Mackinlay was featured in the press last week after having his hands and feet amputated after he contracted sepsis last September. Mr Mackinlay was given a 5 per cent chance of survival and remarkably survived to tell his tale.

As he prepares to return to work at the Houses of Parliament, Mr Mackinlay is keen to raise awareness of the disease to make sure 'the health service recognises sepsis at the earliest opportunity'.

His case was very unusual so early diagnosis was not an issue, but, as he says: 'For many people, there should be a recognition that you've got something severely wrong.

'A broad spectrum of antibiotics could stop you from losing limbs.'

Last year, Gabriella Gooday and I settled a claim against Peterborough City Hospital where a delay in diagnosing sepsis meant our client also had to have her forefeet and middle fingers amputated. She too was given a 5 per cent chance of survival. 

On arrival at the hospital, a doctor diagnosed a pulled muscle following one episode of vomiting and she was discharged home with no follow up or safety netting advice. No blood tests or an X-ray were performed.

Her condition worsened and three days' later, she was blue-lighted back to Peterborough City Hospital where she was diagnosed with severe pneumonia and septic shock. She suffered multi-organ failure.

Following a Letter of Claim, the defendant made an early admission of liability. The defendant admitted that the woman received negligent treatment when she attended A&E, resulting in catastrophic damage including the bilateral amputation of her forefeet and distal middle fingers.

Like Mr Mackinlay, we continue to lobby for better understanding of sepsis to ensure hospital staff consider sepsis early, not only to save people the devastation of amputation but crucially to save lives. 

Related expertise

Sepsis Claims