Case studies

medical instruments
Elusive nerve

29 November 2012

A patient claimed that her consultant ENT surgeon negligently injured her recurrent laryngeal nerve (RLN) during a thyroidectomy, leading to an RLN palsy.

Ischaemic orchitis

29 November 2012

The patient had been referred to a general surgeon by his GP because of a bulky recurrent left inguinal hernia.

Ureteric damage

29 November 2012

A 48-year old woman was referred to a consultant gynaecologist when her GP was unable to remove her IUD. The consultant found a bulky uterus, cystocele and second degree prolapse. Also unable to remove the coil, he recommended a hysterectomy.

Failure to diagnose meningitis

1 October 2012

Nine years after the event, a parent alleged that a GP failed to diagnose meningitis in her child. The GP had since died and the medical records had been destroyed.

A cyst that was not a cyst

1 August 2012

A 45-year old obese architect presented to her GP in 2003 with a pain behind her right knee

Acute discitis

1 August 2012

The patient, a woman in her 50s, was referred privately to the MDU member, a consultant neurosurgeon, with severe back pain. Although she had experienced back pain before, this was a new episode that began acutely after she had been gardening, which had included some heavy lifting.

Anatomy of a claim
Applying the Bolam principle

1 August 2012

Following a tonsillectomy at a specialist ENT unit, a 44-year old female patient was given a post-operative drug regime to control the severe pain associated with adult tonsillectomy.

Confirming testamentary capacity

1 August 2012

A GP received a request from a solicitor asking her to confirm that a patient had testamentary capacity.

Consent in emergency medicine

1 August 2012

Is this elderly woman competent to make a decision after a traffic accident?

Dancing mishap

1 August 2012

A 28 year-old professional dance teacher injured her left knee in a tango demonstration class.