Compensation for delayed treatment of patient's femoral nerve palsy


We have represented a young man who suffered multiple injuries when he fell some 25 feet from a bridge. Our client was extremely lucky to survive the fall but sustained head, chest and pelvic injuries. He was taken to hospital where a subcutaneous pelvic fixator ‘INFIX’ device was attached to his pelvis. Unfortunately, this trapped his femoral nerve.

Following surgery, swelling occurred and our client began to demonstrate some signs of nerve injury which were not detected or treated promptly. Breach of duty for poor medical care was admitted by the defendant NHS trust, although causation remained in dispute. The defendant trust maintained that even if the nerve injury had been identified promptly and our client had been returned to theatre sooner for it to be surgically released, he would still have been left with a degree of femoral nerve palsy, causing a reduction in function and mobility. This would have required care and assistance in the future in any event.

Our team, led by partner Alison Johnson, obtained orthopaedic and neurological expert evidence as well as a quantum report from a specialist in care and occupational therapy. We voluntarily disclosed evidence early to assist the trust with its own investigations and to try to open settlement discussions. Frustratingly, NHS Resolution, representing the trust, was slow to respond, but we were ultimately able to achieve a settlement of £80,000 in damages without needing to litigate the claim.


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Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP

Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP is a limited liability partnership registered in England and Wales with registered number OC311575 and is authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority.

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