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(20 Posts)
Dee1012 Sat 28-May-22 11:46:30

I'd really welcome the thoughts of people.

6 years ago my son had an accident at work, initially innocuous or so we thought although extremely painful at the time.
Through the following year's the pain became much worse until it was severe and constant, his mobility became very poor and his quality of life both physically and mentally was pretty awful.
He managed to keep his job although he had to work massively reduced hours and was unable to go ahead with previously planned promotion.

Medically, everything was a battle. On one occasion I was told that he had to learn to live with the pain...

After yet another battle, he was transferred to the care of another hospital and during the appointment with the consultant was basically told everything we'd heard previously was wrong and he felt that with a surgical procedure, he could improve the situation dramatically.
My son has recently undergone his operation and all the signs are looking very, very positive.

A number of people have suggested to my son that he thinks about taking action against hospital no'1 for what happened and the trauma of the last years.
He's very uncertain although understandably extremely unhappy and angry.
He asked me about my feelings and thoughts....a lot of his care and support came from me, I'm unsure too.
Part of me is furious, another so uncertain...
I am however totally biased!

Glorianny Sat 28-May-22 12:00:46

I'm not sure you would have any grounds. or be able to obtain any evidence for a claim. Surgeons have varying abilities and skills and some do operations others wouldn't' t (or can't). You would have to prove that the first hospital had the expertise and the capability to do the operation and deliberately with held it.

JaneJudge Sat 28-May-22 12:03:56

It might be worth obtaining his notes and reading through them, that might give you closure in a way. It is really expensive to bring a legal claim now as I don't think it is very easy to get legal aid any more

Elizabeth27 Sat 28-May-22 12:11:54

It does not mean the initial diagnosis was wrong just another consultant's opinion at the time. Things may have changed over time with his injury or the first doctor may have wanted to wait and see what happens before recommending surgery.

Medical negligence is very difficult to prove and expensive. If you do go to a no win no fee lawyer check the small print very carefully it can be a loan agreement you are signing which will be used to pay the fees if you lose.

Shelflife Sat 28-May-22 16:49:33

Dee, I imagine it would be very difficult to prove negligence. I understand the pain and distress your son had had to endure but looking on the positive side he is at last improving, you must both be very relieved and happy about that. Such good news , onwards and upwards for him now!

MissAdventure Sat 28-May-22 17:01:37

I think it would probably be more trouble than it's worth.
There is difference between delayed or missed diagnosis, and there are very strict criteria to fill before a missed diagnosis would be accepted.

activerelaxer Sat 28-May-22 17:11:11

I would certainly make a complaint so that the mistake can be learnt from. I’m on the fence about compensation.

BlueBelle Sat 28-May-22 17:15:58

My friend who has had a very painful and eventually it will be terminal condition was told by one surgeon there was an operation that could give her twenty year of painfree life When she saw her usual consultant he told her there was no way her body could take the operation
Opinions can vary with the experience of the consultant

This could be a totally long drawn out complaint that could cost more than it’s worth I think I d be eternally grateful to have found something that seems to have made a difference and forget about suing

MissAdventure Sat 28-May-22 17:20:15

I watch a young woman on youtube who has stage 4 uterine cancer, after 2 years of constantly telling her gp about bleeding and ot being ignored, dismissed, or not written down.
She is not going to be given any compensation (as if anything could compensate) because of all the legal loopholes involved.

Germanshepherdsmum Sat 28-May-22 17:47:13

It sounds as though he is at last making progress, and I hope that continues.

Clinical negligence isn't always easy to prove and a case can go on for years. Having that hanging over you is very exhausting.

The original source of his problem is the accident. You have six years to file a claim and can then see how things pan out.
When you say the accident was six years ago, I assume that it may have been more than exactly six years. If the employer was to blame for the accident, they will have insurance - but by now your son may be too late to sue them. Of course the accident may nt have been the employer's fault though.

Your son could always have an interview with a solicitor who offers genuine no win no fee work - the details need to be carefully checked - to assess his chances of success against anybody. They would usually take a hefty chunk of any compensation, but if he doesn't enquire he will never know and that may gnaw away at him. He may have to face the fact that he should have acted much earlier. He does, however, have to be strong enough to face up to a long battle if he is advised there is a reasonable prospect of success. Often things are found not to have been anyone's fault, legally.

Blossoming Sat 28-May-22 17:47:20

Hello Dee1012, firstly I’d just like to say how sorry I am for what you and your son have been through.

What others have said is very true, it is hard to prove these cases. I recommend that you find a solicitor that specialises in these cases and seek an opinion on whether your son has a case. You may need to pay for the initial appointment. Many operate on a no win - no fee basis if they think you have a good case. There is a company who take misdiagnosis cases, I haven’t used them myself but I know somebody who has and I’ve had dealings with them in another context through a disability charity,

Google ‘Irwin Mitchell misdiagnosis’ and you will find a link to their website.

paddyann54 Sat 28-May-22 21:09:04

My neighbour sued her GP for negligence ,she had been seeing him about a breast issue .He said it wasn't cancer so no need for a referral .It was, she needed a mastectomy .The practice settled out of court and the doctor left for pastures new .She was just 30 .

Dee1012 Sun 29-May-22 10:51:17

Thank you all for your comments. Many voicing some of my own thoughts.

When my son first visited the Surgeon who operated, he pointed out certain things visible in the MRI and X-ray reports which he said 'should have been obvious', other comments were, that the delay will have caused irreparable damage to other area's and I think this is what is playing on my son's mind...understandably.
For now I've suggested he focus on recovery and perhaps talk to a reputable solicitor in the near future and make his decision at that point.

BeEmerald Sun 29-May-22 11:22:45

Trying to prove medical negligence is a major undertaking, very stressful and time consuming. Look how long the Shropshire hospital maternity incompetence has taken to be resolved.
My second son died as a baby because of medical mistakes but in those days they all just lied and covered things up. I don’t think much has changed in that dept today.

HowVeryDareYou Sun 29-May-22 19:17:24

I believe there's a time limit on how long after an incident action might be taken. Proving any type of negligence is almost impossible.

Last year, I was on a ventilator with Covid. After a week, the hospital took me off it to see if I could breathe unaided - after a day, they decided to put me back on it. They needed to sedate me (put me into a medical coma again). They injected me with the wrong stuff- Adrenaline. It sent my BP to 350 top figure. The error was rectified shortly afterwards, then a day later it was found that I'd had a stroke (5 blood clots, actually). I was in hospital for a further 4 weeks.

This was all told to me over the 'phone, 2 months later, when I was at home. An investigation was made, and I received the written 5 page report. They said the stroke was caused by Covid - no other reason for my stroke, they said (non-smoker, no hypertension, etc). I contacted 3 "no win, no fee" places - none would take on the case, as they said the NHS had already concluded their investigation.

In my experience, it's virtually impossible to sue the NHS.

Germanshepherdsmum Sun 29-May-22 19:22:57

It's not, but if you want to do it on a 'no win no fee' basis you have to have a very good case.

Casdon Sun 29-May-22 19:25:45

Thousands successfully sue the NHS for medical negligence every year, so it’s certainly not impossible, however there's a three year time limit for starting a medical negligence claim. This time limit runs from either the date that the negligence occurred or when you became aware that the treatment you received was negligent. The best thing to do is to seek legal advice, having requested a full copy of your case notes, for which you have to pay.

HowVeryDareYou Sun 29-May-22 20:42:14

Casdon There isn't a charge for getting your own medicalnotes. I've got all mine (I was in 2 different hospitals over 6 weeks) on CD. Free.

Casdon Sun 29-May-22 20:48:57

It may have changed HowVeryDareYou, so I’ll take your word for it. It certainly used to be that you could obtain a limited section of your medical notes for free, but if you wanted your whole case notes, including nursing notes, anaesthetic records etc. there was a charge if it was deemed ‘excessive’ (eg it took a clerk a day to copy everything in a thick set of case notes, which can be the case). It’s become easier to do the task now more notes are digital, but I think it does still depend exactly what you are asking for.

Katie59 Sun 29-May-22 21:30:38

If you can prove negligence then you have a case, it would need to be an omission from the approved diagnosis procedure in force at the time. Pain in particular can be very difficult to cure, sometimes despite treatment it persists.

For most, unless you can find a “no win no fee” lawyer its not likely to be possible to win a claim