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If you have suffered issues with cataracts and you believe this to be due to the negligence of a medical professional, you may be in a position to make a claim for compensation. The team at JMW has the experience and skill necessary to guide you throughout your cataracts claim, giving you the best chance of securing the outcome you are after.
We have dealt with many other cases of this nature and we understand the complexities involved. To speak to a member of our team about whether or not you may have a case and to discuss your situation in more detail, simply call us on 0800 054 6512 or allow us to get in touch with you by completing our online enquiry form.
A cataract is opacity in the lens of the eye that impairs vision. It is a very common condition and accounts for about 40% of blindness worldwide.
Cataracts cause progressive visual deterioration, but the rate of change is highly variable. Cataracts caused by trauma to the eye can occur within hours, but age-related cataracts (by far the majority) may take years to progress. Early surgery for apparent, relatively mild visual defects more often than not provides a dramatic improvement in visual performance well beyond the patient's expectations.
However, as with all types of surgery, cataract operations carry a certain element of risk and mistakes can happen. If you have undergone such a procedure and this has led to increased or further suffering, making a claim could help to compensate for the harm caused.
Although a crude form of cataract surgery has been performed since ancient times, it is only in the past 20 years or so that extracapsular cataract extraction (ECCE) has become standard treatment.
This involves cutting into the front of the lens capsule and removing the contents (the cataract) and then inserting a flexible artificial lens into the remaining capsular 'bag', which provides support to the new lens. Before this technique was developed, the whole of the affected lens was removed and replaced by an artificial lens, however results were less successful.
The success of modern cataract surgery has been dramatic, with success rates of 98%, but complications do sometimes arise. These are due mainly to poor surgical technique or infection.
There are various symptoms of cataract. Among the more common are:
- Progressive blurring of vision
- Diminished vision in bright light
- Difficulty with near/reading vision
- De-saturation of colour vision
There are many risk factors in the development of cataracts that can place certain people at increased risk. These include:
- Increasing age
- Cardiovascular disease
- Excessive alcohol intake
- Gastrointestinal problems
- Diuretics and other drugs
Occasionally, 'congenital cataracts' are present at birth or develop soon afterwards. Approximately 0.03% of newborns have some form of congenital cataract. Around one-fifth of these have a family history of congenital cataracts, but in many cases there is no such history and most are not associated with additional developmental problems.
In newborn infants, a cataract causes the immature visual system to be deprived of the stimulation needed for normal development. If left untreated, permanent visual loss can occur.
A large number of cases that JMW is asked to investigate concern surgery that has gone wrong and we are highly experienced in this type of case. If you have been harmed as a result of incompetence or lack of care or poor judgment, get in touch with our team to find out how we can help you get the outcome you deserve.
Our clinical negligence team is known for its professional and proactive approach and we are highly regarded throughout the UK, having secured significant sums for various people who have needlessly suffered due to the negligence of others.
The team includes members of the Law Society's specialist panel for clinical negligence and the Action against Medical Accidents (AvMA) solicitor panel.