Medical Negligence News

Patient Compensated for Surgical Injury

Posted on: September 8th, 2016 by Medical Negligence

A woman, who sustained a severe jaw dislocation whilst undergoing surgery, has been awarded a six-figure settlement of compensation.

In December 2010, Amanda Walker (forty-eight from Knaresborough in North Yorkshire) tragically discovered that she had miscarried twins. As such, she needed to undergo an operation at the  Harrogate District Hospital to remove the miscarried foetuses. Upon awaking after the operation, Amanda discovered that she was experiencing extreme pain in her face and was unable to move her jaw.

The hospital attributed the pain to a condition with which Amanda had been diagnosed ten years earlier.  To investigate the pain, Amanda visited her dentist to investigate this diagnosis, who discovered that her jaw had been misaligned and that she had sustained severe tissue damage. A MRI scan showed that the extent of Amanda’s jaw injury was comparable with those seen in car crash victims. Amanda has been unable to return to her job in marketing because of the pain caused by the dislocation.

To correct that damage, a further four surgeries were required – including one that inserted an implant. The Harrogate District Hospital maintained that they were not at fault for the damage, though Amanda still chose to consult a solicitor. The solicitor, carried out an investigation which concluded that the way in which the surgical mask was applied to Amanda caused her injury, and not the pre-existing condition.

Amanda proceeded to make a claim for medical negligence compensation against the Harrogate and District NHS Foundation Trust. The trust contested the claim until very recently, but when they did admit that they were at fault, a six-figure settlement of compensation was awarded.

Dr David Scullion, the Medical Director of the Harrogate and District NHS Foundation Trust, commented that “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.”