Delayed Treatment of Wrist Fracture – Mr P
Category: Delayed Treatment Claims
Last Updated: 27th Sep 2021
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Mr P fell onto his left hand whilst playing football and immediately experienced a sharp pain in his left wrist. He attended the A&E department at his local hospital on the same day and was seen by a doctor who did not examine the wrist and arranged for anterior and lateral x-rays to be taken. No fracture was seen on those x-rays and Mr P was discharged home with a splint.
Almost two years later, Mr P felt a sharp pain in his left wrist after simply changing gear whilst driving his car. Investigations then confirmed a non-union of an old left scaphoid fracture in his wrist. It was thought likely that the scaphoid fracture had happened when he fell onto his left hand two years earlier. Two years later avascular necrosis had developed in the joint, and Mr P required surgery to try to fix the scaphoid with bone grafting. However, despite the surgery, the fracture failed to unite and Mr P requires more surgery in the future.
The delayed treatment claim was pursued on the basis that there had been a failure to undertake a competent examination by the doctor in A&E following the fall onto the left hand. Had a competent examination been carried out, it would have led to a scaphoid series of x-rays being carried out at that time and the fracture would have been diagnosed at the time. If that had happened, Mr P would have received appropriate treatment and made a full recovery at that stage. This was considered as enough grounds to support a medical negligence claim
Liability was admitted in the Letter of Response and the claim settled prior to the issue of proceedings for £40,000, including £19,000 for general damages for pain and suffering.
This case was led by Tony Mitty.
NOTE: While our case studies are designed to give an indication of the outcomes that can be achieved in these circumstances, the compensation awarded in individual cases can vary significantly due to a range of factors, including effects on life expectancy, the severity of the negligence that took place, and the financial impact.
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