Hospital Trust Settles Claim after Failing to Adequately Discuss the Potential Risks of Treatment with a Patient
In April 2015, Alan developed a sore eye and sought help at Newcastle’s Royal Victoria Infirmary.
After being diagnosed as suffering with an ulcer on his eye, Alan received a course of treatment that involved eye-drops being administered every hour, whilst he remained in hospital.
The attending Clinician reportedly proposed an alternative treatment, whereby Alan would be able to go home. The proposal was for him to receive a single injection of a drug called Mydricaine into his eye and then eye-drops only once per day.
He agreed to the proposed treatment, unaware of any potential risks to his health.
Unfortunately, the injection caused Alan to suffer an episode of myocardial ischemia soon after the Mydricaine injection was administered.
Myocardial ischemia is a cardiac event in which blood flow to the heart is reduced, preventing the heart from receiving enough oxygen.
Alan was very distressed and thought that he had suffered a heart attack. He required treatment as an inpatient in two different hospitals over the course of a two week period, before he was discharged. He was told that he had made a full recovery.
As he was unhappy about the treatment that he had received, Alan contacted Longden Walker and Renney enquiring as to whether he could pursue a Claim for damages.
We obtained copies of his medical records and prepared a witness statement on his behalf.
On review of the hospital’s documentation it transpired that there was no record of Alan having ever been warned about the risks associated with the treatment he received.
Alan told us that he would not have consented to let the doctors inject Mydricaine into his eye, had he known that such a reaction was a known risk of such a procedure.
The medical records also revealed that the Trust should have been aware that Alan had a longstanding history of heart failure before the treatment was proposed.
On Alan’s instruction we prepared a formal letter to the Defendant Trust setting out his allegations. The NHS Litigation Authority responded on the Trust’s behalf, proposing to settle the Claim on a basis whereby the Trust would pay Alan £7,500 compensation and cover his basic legal fees and expenses.
Alan accepted the Trust’s settlement proposal, resolving his Claim within 18 months of his having first sought any legal advice.
If, like Alan, you have suffered an injury whilst in hospital, it is important that you obtain expert legal advice as soon as possible.