Archive for September 2016

Compensation for the Failure to Diagnose a Cancerous Mole Settled Out of Court

A woman has recovered a settlement of compensation for the failure to diagnose a cancerous mole after two doctors told her she had nothing to worry about.

The unnamed woman claimed compensation for the failure to diagnose a cancerous mole after attending her local surgery with concerns about a mole on her foot that had changed in appearance and become itchy. The GP she saw initially told her she had nothing to worry about and sent her home.

As the mole continued to concern the woman, she returned to the surgery a few weeks later. A second GP refused to refer her to a specialist and repeated the opinion that she had nothing to worry about before sending her home. Neither doctor measured the size of the mole.

It was only on a third visit to her local surgery that the woman´s concerns were taken seriously. The third GP she saw decided that she could not remove the mole but suggested cutting away the top of it. The woman declined the suggested treatment and was referred instead to her local hospital.

At the hospital, a dermatologist removed part of the mole and sent it for tests. The result of the biopsy was that the mole was cancerous, and the woman underwent an operation to have the entire mole removed. Unfortunately, subsequent tests revealed that the cancer from the mole had metastasised, and the woman is now undergoing treatment for secondary cancer.

The woman sought legal advice about her rights and, on the advice of her solicitor, claimed compensation for the failure to diagnose a cancerous mole against the GP who had first attended her and the surgery. She alleged in her claim that, had she received an appropriate standard of care on her first visit, the cancer would have been identified sooner and her prognosis better.

The GP and the surgery both denied negligence and contested that the woman was entitled to any compensation for the failure to diagnose a cancerous mole. However, after the defendants were threatened with court action, their insurance companies settled the claim for an undisclosed six-figure sum.

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Woman Receives Compensation for Injuries Caused by a Surgical Mask

A woman whose jaw was dislocated during an operation is to receive a six-figure settlement of compensation for injuries caused by a surgical mask.

In December 2010, Amanda Walker (48) from Knaresborough in North Yorkshire received the devastating news that she had miscarried twins. She was booked into Harrogate District Hospital to undergo a routine procedure to remove the foetuses but, when she woke up from the operation, Amanda was unable to open her mouth and experience severe pain down the right side of her face.

The hospital claimed that the pain was attributable to a condition she had developed ten year´s previously but, on a later visit to her dentist, it was found that Amanda´s jaw was misaligned and that there was significant damage to the soft tissues surrounding it. Amanda underwent an MRI scan, where it was revealed that her jaw had been dislocated as if she had been in a car accident.

Amanda had to undergo four corrective operations including one to insert a prosthetic jaw. The hospital maintained that the injuries were attributable to a historic condition but Amanda was not convinced and sought legal advice. Her solicitor´s investigation uncovered that the injuries had been caused by the force with which a surgical mask had been applied during the operation at Harrogate District Hospital.

Amanda – who has been unable to return to her job in PR and advertising since the incident – made a claim for compensation for injuries caused by a surgical mask. The claim was contested until recently, when the Harrogate and District NHS Foundation Trust admitted it liability for Amanda´s injuries and agreed to a six-figure settlement of her claim.

Dr David Scullion – Medical Director for the Harrogate and District NHS Foundation Trust – said: “The Trust is pleased an agreement has been reached. We have apologised to Ms Walker for the impact this injury has had on her. We conducted an investigation into Ms Walker’s care with us in 2010 and want to give assurance that we have learned all we can from this incident.”

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