£700,000 Compensation in Needless Leg Amputation Case

A Medical Negligence Claim Case Study - Client Situation

In September 2008, our client was referred to the Department of Vascular Surgery at Russell's Hall Hospital, where he was diagnosed with an occlusive disease of his abdominal left iliac artery.

He was told he needed a crossover graft and was admitted to the hospital for the procedure in December 2008. During surgery, the initial graft failed however a second was successful. Following this a crossover graft was taken from the right common femoral to the left common femoral artery.

At the end of the six and a half hour procedure, surgeons noted that our client could not feel or move his right leg, which was pale and cold and had no pulse. The same findings were noted just over three hours later and a blood thinner was administered, but with no further surgery carried out that evening.

At 5:45 the next morning, a surgeon noted that our client’s right foot was pale, pulseless and painful, with reduced sensation and a painful swelling in the right thigh. Shortly afterwards, our client was seen by a surgical specialist registrar, who suspected compartment syndrome - a serious condition involving increased pressure in a muscle compartment which can lead to muscle and nerve damage and problems with blood flow.

At 9 am, our client was returned to theatre for fasciotomy to relieve the pressure and exploration of the graft. A bypass was taken from the aorta to both common femoral arteries and a four compartment fasciotomy of the right lower leg was performed.

Despite these and other procedures over the course of the next four months, our client showed little sign of improvement. Consequently, in May 2009, our client underwent an above knee amputation of his right leg.

How We Helped

Our client had gone through a prolonged, painful and distressing experience as a result of clinicians’ failure to diagnose his compartment syndrome. He therefore got in touch with our specialist team of Medical Negligence Solicitors to pursue a compensation claim against the Dudley Group NHS Foundation Trust.

Our Medical Negligence Solicitors arranged for the client to undergo an independent medical assessment, so that we could establish his physical condition and future care needs. This helped us to calculate the amount of compensation which would be required for our client’s care and rehabilitation requirements to be met for the rest of his life.

The Outcome

After lengthy negotiations between our Solicitors and the Lawyers representing Dudley Group NHS Foundation Trust, the Trust offered to pay a total of £700,000 in compensation, which was accepted by our client.

This will help ensure he is able to access the care and support he requires in the future, and enjoy a better quality of life.

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