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Undiagnosed injury case settled

Posted in: Foot Injuries Medical Negligence NHS Claims 

Robert McCartney has been awarded compensation after his tendon injury went undiagnosed for several weeks. He brought the medical negligence claim against his GP after he was turned away and told to rest despite his clear symptoms of a ruptured tendo-achilles.

In April 2010, Mr McCartney had been outside his home when he slipped backwards off a step and experienced a ‘snap’ sensation in the back of his left ankle. When it became swollen and the pain increased, he applied ice packs and rested his ankle that evening. The next day, however, the pain and swelling had only worsened so he attended the urgent care centre at Luton & Dunstable Hospital.  

Very clear evidence of a ‘chronic and neglected rupture’

He was assessed by a GP at the urgent care centre, who carried out an x-ray. When the x-ray showed no signs of breakage, he was told to return home and rest. In the weeks following the assessment, Mr McCartney’s ankle showed no sign of improvement. He then visited his GP, who referred him to a podiatrist, who diagnosed him with tendonitis. When the injury only continued to worsen, he was then referred to the orthopaedic department at Luton & Dunstable Hospital. An orthopaedic surgeon examined him in September 2010, who said there was very clear evidence of a ‘chronic and neglected rupture of the tendo-achilles’.

Despite Mr McCartney’s case consisting of clear medical negligence, the complex arrangements between the NHS and private health care firms made the duty of care difficult to identify. In these particular circumstances, the GP admitted liability for the negligence.

Mr McCartney was awarded an undisclosed compensation package.

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