Delayed Diagnosis of a Deep Vein Thrombosis

14 September 2017

Our client suffered a history of knee problems and therefore chose to undergo total knee replacement surgery. She had also suffered a history of leg swelling, therefore needed an ultrasound prior to surgery to check for the presence of any blood clots or Deep Vein Thrombosis (‘DVT’). The results came back clear and surgery took place.

During our client’s time in recovery, her leg became extremely swollen despite regular physiotherapy. By the time she was discharged around nine days later, her leg remained swollen, hot and painful. The hospital failed to refer her for an ultrasound at this stage or indeed at any time following her operation. It was not until she returned to A&E around a week later that a scan was undertaken which revealed a DVT in our client’s lower leg.

Our client’s case was that as result of the delay in diagnosis of the DVT, she suffered a prolonged recovery and her long term symptoms (such as pain and ongoing swelling in her calf) were worse than they would have been in the absence of any negligence by the hospital.

The hospital admitted that the failure to refer our client for an ultrasound following her surgery was negligent. They did not however admit that the extent of her ongoing problems were related to the delay in diagnosis of the DVT.

Barlow Robbins therefore obtained and analysed expert medical evidence from a range of disciplines, in order to prove our client’s case. After a lengthy battle with the Defendant, we were able to negotiate settlement at a figure far higher than our client expected and which more than compensated her for the losses she had incurred as a result of the Defendant’s negligence. In addition, we were able to do so at an early stage of the proceedings and before the matter needed to be put before a Judge. Our client was extremely relieved to see a conclusion to her case and she was satisfied with the overall outcome.

"I was very pleased to have been able to work with Victoria Jones of Barlow Robbins on behalf of a claimant in a particularly difficult claim against the NHS. The case involved multi-disciplinary complex medical evidence including significant issues in relation to causation. Barlow Robbins approached the claim in a clear, professional manner instructing the right experts, asking the right questions and providing excellent support and advice to the client throughout. When it came to negotiate a settlement with the defendants, Barlow Robbins were tough and skillful negotiators with the result that the claim settled far in excess of the clients expectations and certainly more than would have been achieved in the matter had run to trial. The whole experience of working with their excellent team was very good." - Adam Dawson, Counsel at 9 Gough Square

By Victoria Jones

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