£200,000 settlement reached for negligent treatment following knee surgery

Posted by Kym Provan on

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An NHS Trust was liable for clinical negligence where it had been negligent in its treatment of a 30 year old woman, resulting in the diagnosis of Post Thrombotic Syndrome, which greatly affected her personal and working life.

Miss A had surgery on both of her knees in 2008 and 2009, however after pain continued in her right knee she underwent a further operation on 30 November 2010. Miss A has a family history of Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) and throughout the operations she was taking the contraceptive pill. She was recorded as "high risk" during the pre-operative assessment in November 2010 and following the surgery in 2010, she was prescribed anti-coagulant medication. However, she only received one dose of the medication whilst an inpatient, and on discharge from hospital, was not given any further required medication. She was left without the required medication for 6 days and no discussion was had with her about the symptoms of DVT.

Due to her concern about the lack of anti-coagulant medication, Miss A contacted the Defendant Trust and her GP to obtain the medication. It was not until 8 December 2010 that she commenced the required injections. In follow up physiotherapy sessions, which took place in January 2011, despite evident discolouring on her right leg, no action was taken with regard to the presence of a DVT and it was not until the end of January 2011 that Miss A was referred for investigation. A chest x-ray revealed that Miss A had suffered multiple pulmonary emboli and she continued to suffer from increased breathlessness and pain in her leg, which led to numerous hospital admissions. In October 2011, she was diagnosed with Post Thrombotic Syndrome (PTS). She developed short term depression and an adjustment disorder due to the impact that her injury had on her lifestyle.

Despite attempts by Miss A and her former employer, she was unable to return to her work as an estate agent in the long term and was forced to retrain, subsequently needing to rebuild her client base after qualifying. She was unable to dance, a lifelong passion of hers, had to wear high grade compression stockings on a daily basis for the rest of her life and experienced pain and discomfort if she stood or sat in the same position for any length of time.

Miss A contacted Kym Provan at BL Claims Solicitors as specialist clinical negligence solicitors. It was alleged that if she had been appropriately given the required anti-coagulant medication in the post-operative period and had proper consideration been given to her family history of DVT, she would not have developed DVT, PE or the PTS.

Expert evidence was obtained and the Defendant Trust admitted liability. Kym put forward the case that the diagnosis of PTS had greatly impacted Miss A's personal and working life. She would need private obstetric medical care in the future. She also faced the possibility of further DVTs, leg ulceration and deterioration in her mobility in the future.

A settlement of £200,000 was reached between the parties in October 2015.

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About the Author

Kym specialises in clinical negligence claims and heads our clinical negligence team in Southampton.

Kym Provan
Email Kym
023 8085 7317

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