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20 July 2015

Mistakes during routine surgery affecting patients quality of life

According to a report published by the NHS Litigation Authority in 2014, the number of clinical negligence claims filed against the NHS reached almost 12,000. Mistakes made during routine surgical procedures account for over 10% of the total figure.

Errors during surgery can potentially have devastating effects on both the patients affected and those closest to them. In the UK, there have been several recent incidents that have highlighted the damaging physical and psychological repercussions for those involved.

Last week, a former police officer received over £250,000 in compensation after a mistake during surgery left him permanently disabled. Michael Dunn, 51, had to prematurely end his 24-year career with Greater Manchester Police because of the error. Surgeons at Salford Royal Hospital operated on the wrong section of Mr Dunn’s spine, consequently he lost the full use of his right arm. Following the settlement, he said, “It has completely changed my life. I had planned to stay with the Police until I retired but this has been taken away. I was led to believe it was a straightforward operation so I wasn’t expecting any complications.”

Another case in the national press involved a patient who was left incontinent following a hysterectomy. Mother of three from Cornwall, Claire Hill, was left in agony after a hole near her bladder was not diagnosed by her original surgeon. It wasn’t until seeing a second consultant and two years after her initial operation until she regained full control of her bladder. As a result, she was awarded up to £100,000 in compensation. After the settlement, Mrs Hill commented, saying she went through “months of being told nothing was wrong”, before “having to endure two operations and lots of other help to put right what went wrong.”

It is important to recognise that every surgical malpractice case is unique, and unfortunately mistakes can be made in even the most routine procedures.

Have you or someone you know suffered due to a mistake made during surgery? Longden Walker & Renney are experienced in dealing with such cases. We aim to achieve compensation for our clients to cover any required corrective treatment, as well as any suffering or financial loss you may have experienced.

Contact our experienced team of solicitors on 0191 5666 5000. You can also request a callback via our online enquiry form and we will get in touch at a time that is convenient for you. Your initial advice session will be free and you will be under no obligation.