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Case Study: Spinal Injury Failures Cause Permanent Disability
Compensation: £1.7 million
A man who has has been left permanently paralysed has been awarded £1.7 million compensation following negligent spinal care by medical professionals.
Gary was left wheelchair dependant after NHS spinal injury failures rendered him permanently disabled. Gary now suffers weakness in his lower legs, poor co-ordination, loss of feeling and bladder and bowel dysfunction.
After Gary’s claim was taken on by Eddie Jones, a specialist solicitor at JMW, he was awarded £1.7 million in compensation to help him to cope.
Start of ordeal
Gary’s ordeal began when he developed severe back pain one day. He attended an NHS walk-in centre at his local hospital and was seen by a nurse. Gary described his symptoms as severe shooting pain in his back which felt as though a knife had been stuck in it and was being twisted. Gary said the pain was coming and going and was also radiating through his chest and down his left arm and he also had pins and needles in his left hand and fingers.
The nurse told Gary to go straight to accident and emergency at the hospital. Gary went to A&E as instructed and was seen almost immediately. His heart rate was monitored with an ECG and when a doctor examined him Gary explained the pain was getting worse and that he was hot, feverish and been sweating abnormally the previous night.
It was suspected that Gary might have a problem with his heart but a chest X-Ray and blood tests all came back normal. Doctors decided that there was nothing wrong with Gary so sent home and with instructions to take paracetamol for the pain and return in a week if it had not subsided.
When Gary woke up the next day the pain was worse and he called his GP surgery for an appointment. Gary was told by the doctor that he probably had a viral infection and was prescribed a stronger painkiller. Gary’s wife drove him home and he took the medication, had a hot bath and went back to bed, still in severe pain.
When Gary woke up the next morning he found that he had very little feeling in both legs and feet, which spread all the way up to his belly button. Gary also had a pins and needles sensation, was unsteady on his feet and was stumbling like he was drunk. Gary and his wife went back to the GP surgery and the doctor told them to go straight to hospital.
After an hour-and-a-half wait Gary was given a bed and throughout the evening he was seen by a number of doctors who were all baffled by his illness. Gary had not passed urine for some time and later that night a doctor said she would arrange for an MRI scan late the following morning.
The MRI scan showed that Gary had a tumour on his spinal cord and he would be transferred to a specialist hospital for emergency spinal surgery. However by now permanent damage to the nerves in Gary’s spine had been caused due to pressure from the tumour and he was left permanently disabled.
Gary felt that his tragic situation could have been avoided and contacted the specialist solicitors at JMW for help. His case was taken on by Eddie Jones, who found several unacceptable failures on the part of the hospital. These included failing to heed the significance of Gary’s symptoms, failing to undertake adequate tests and investigations and failing to discuss his condition with a specialist spinal centre and arrange his transfer there in good time.
After JMW’s intervention Gary was awarded £1.7 million in compensation to help him to cope with the devastating impact of the errors.
Have you or a loved one suffered in a similar way to Gary?
If you or anyone you know has been affected by any of the topics discussed above, and require advice and guidance on your particular situation, simply get in touch with our expert and friendly team.
More Case Studies
Failure to properly investigate and treat suspected Cauda Equina Syndrome has resulted in a woman receiving £4.37 million compensation.
Spinal injury specialists at JMW obtained £2.75 million in compensation for Jean after appalling errors led to her suffering permanent cauda equina syndrome. This case study tells Jean's story.
Eddie Jones, head of medical negligence at JMW, secured £2.6 million for a woman whose life was devastated by negligent cauda equina syndrome care.
Melissa Gardner, a partner specialising in spinal injuries in the JMW clinical negligence department, secured £2.1 million in compensation to help a woman cope with the devastating impact of permanent cauda equina syndrome after a poor consultation from a doctor caused a delay in diagnosis and treatment
JMW partner Melissa Gardner secured £2 million for 'Tracy' after her life was devastated by errors in the treatment of her cauda equina syndrome. This case study explains what went wrong and how Melissa helped Tracy.
Claire lost her business and marriage after appalling errors allowed her red flag signs of cauda equina syndrome to go untreated. Claire was left permanently disabled but Eddie Jones as JMW obtained her £925,000 in compensation to help her to cope.
Jim had an attack of sciatica at work, it didn't get better with rest and his GP suspected cauda equina syndrome and sent him to a hospital for investigation. His condition wasn't initially properly diagnosed and got worse and has led to long term suffering.
Peter was left with permanent bowel, bladder and sexual dysfunction, as well as disability and constant pain after delayed treatment of his cauda equina syndrome. As a result he lost his job and struggles with day-to-day tasks such as caring for his children.
Tina had a history of lower back pain and had consulted her GP on a number of occasions. One day she had a particularly severe episode of back pain that was unresponsive to pain relief.
Donna attended her GP with lower back pain and sciatica in her left leg worsening over the previous 2 weeks. She was referred to an orthopaedic consultant at her local hospital.
Paul had a long history of lower back pain and when he was 35 years old, he underwent a laminectomy for removal of a prolapsed intervertebral disc. This was only partially successful and he continued to suffer episodic lower back pain.
'John' now relies on a wheelchair for getting about outdoors after appalling delays to surgery he needed urgently to treat cauda equina syndrome. Steven Brown, a senior associate in JMW's specialist medical negligence team secured John £280,000 in compensation to help him cope with his permanent disabilities.
Joanne was left with permanent bladder, bowel and sexual dysfunction after delays in recognising her cauda equina syndrome. Her case was taken on by JMW Solicitors and she was awarded £250,000 in compensation.
Find out how we helped Tricia to claim £250,000 after medical professionals failed to recognise the risks of cauda equina syndrome.
Aaron was awarded £225,000 in compensation after JMW challenged the poor care that he faced when his Cauda Equina Syndrome was missed by medical professionals. This case study tells his story.
Tony had a long history of lower back pain and sciatica.However, when he was 48 years old he suffered a recurrence of his symptoms. After a month his condition became much more severe and so visited his GP, who prescribed pain relief. JMW claimed £150,000 for the claimant due to clinical negligence.
Gerard had a long history of lower back pain and had attended an osteopath as well as his GP on a number of occasions. He had become depressed since the recent death of his partner.
Collette, 39, had her life devastated by appalling delays to urgently needed spinal surgery. Eddie Jones, head of medical negligence at JMW helped her to win her battle for justice, paving the way for compensation to be secured.
'Michael' suffered negligent diagnosis of cauda equina and received £425,000 in compensation with the help of JMW's Steven Brown.
Delayed MRI scan and poor surgery cause permanent disabilities from cauda equina syndrome - £600,000
Eddie Jones, a cauda equina syndrome specialist solicitor at JMW, obtained £600,000 for a women whose life was devastated by negligent treatment of CES at a local hospital and a specialist spinal unit. Although nothing could ever fully compensate 'Denise' for her ordeal, the money has enabled her to cope with the financial consequences.
Paul, 38, was left with bowel, bladder and sexual dysfunction after surgery to treat cauda equina syndrome was delayed to enable a non-emergency patient to be operated on. His case was taken on by Eddie Jones, head of medical negligence at JMW and a leading cauda equina solicitor, who secured £220,000, enabling him to manage his condition.