Case studies

Settlement of claim for incorrect surgery used on hallux valgus deformity leaving permanent disability


Our client underwent recommended surgery for a hallux valgus deformity (effectively a bunion on her big toe) at the Queen Victoria Memorial Hospital in Kent but, rather than resolving her problems, our client was left with significant pain and swelling.

In May 2009 our client was diagnosed with a hallux valgus deformity (effectively a bunion on her big toe) and was advised to undergo a lapidus procedure to correct this. Our client underwent the recommended surgery at the Queen Victoria Memorial Hospital in Kent but, rather than resolving her problems, our client was left with significant pain and swelling. After the surgery her big toe was no longer touching the floor and was flaccid when walking. She was advised that she needed revision surgery which was later performed. Although this helped to ease the pain to some extent, functionally she was no better. It transpired that the surgery she underwent was the incorrect choice for her level of deformity.

Our client has been left with a nerve injury, her big toe is floppy and not touching the floor and she has developed right hip and knee pain due to her altered gait because of the flaccid big toe. The most distressing aspect for our clientis the fact that she is now at a disadvantage on the open employment market, particularly as she is unable to return to her job as a hairdresser as she cannot stand for long periods of time.

The claim was robustly defended well into court proceedings despite our attempts to settle. Nevertheless, we pressed on with the case and, upon request for clarification of the trust’s arguments and offers to settle being made by our client, the defendant started to indicate that it would settle the claim and negotiations were successful.


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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.

Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP