From Misdiagnosis to Justice: Longton Legal Champions Central Coast Woman in Landmark Medical Negligence Case

Yevgeni Shkuratov

From Misdiagnosis to Justice: Longton Legal Champions Central Coast Woman in Landmark Medical Negligence Case

It only took Yevgeni Shkuratov and Clare Decena, of Longton Legal, 10 months from the time of receipt of instructions and 9 months from the time of commencement of proceedings to recover more than $225,000.00 in a medical negligence claim for a Central Coast woman whose peripheral arterial disease was unreasonably delayed by a New South Wales Public Hospital.

Many medical negligence claims arise out of treatment provided at public or private hospitals by doctors, surgeons, specialists, midwives and nurses. Medical treatment does not always go to plan and mistakes and errors do occur even in the hands of the most experienced medical professionals.

Medical misdiagnosis occurs when symptoms of a serious medical condition are attributed to a less serious medical condition. As a result, the more serious condition is missed and is not diagnosed and leads to erroneous or inappropriate treatment, delayed treatment or, sometimes, no treatment at all being provided to the patient. Most medical misdiagnosis negligence compensation claims involving hospitals occur at emergency departments, as was the case for Jenny.

What happened to Jenny?

Jenny, a known diabetic, was referred with calf pain and swelling to a hospital emergency department by her general practitioner. At the hospital, a venous Doppler ultrasound was performed, but an arterial Doppler ultrasound was not. The pulses in her right leg/foot were not palpated and a CT femoral angiogram was not performed. Jenny was discharged with a diagnosis of a muscle sprain (i.e. a benign condition with little consequences). She presented again to the same hospital 3 months later with more severe symptoms. On that occasion, the pulses in her leg/foot were unable to be palpated, her foot appeared red and swollen and was painful to touch. She was, again, diagnosed with a benign medical condition and discharged home without treatment or further investigation.

Unbeknown to Jenny, she was suffering from peripheral arterial disease, which should have been diagnosed and treated promptly by the hospital staff at her 2 presentations. Peripheral vascular disease is caused by restriction of arterial blood flow to a limb because of the deposition of fats in the walls of arteries. As this disease progresses, blood supply to the affected limb/foot can become critically reduced, skin ulceration over pressure points may occur and healthy tissues within the lower limb can be deprived of blood supply resulting in ischemic tissue damage. Gangrene may then develop and lead to amputation resulting in loss or partial loss of the limb or foot. Fortunately for Jenny, she was ultimately diagnosed with mid right popliteal artery occlusion caused by her peripheral vascular and then received appropriate treatment.  Thankfully, no major damage was caused and Jenny only lost her little toe due to the negligent delay in diagnosis of her disease.

How we helped Jenny?

Upon Jenny engaging Longton Legal to assist her with her medical negligence compensation claim, we promptly obtained her treating clinical records from the subject hospital and her subsequent treatment providers, obtained the necessary evidence in relation to the issue of liability from an emergency physician and a vascular surgeon, and commenced proceedings in the District Court of New South Wales. We then had Jenny assessed by several medical specialists to determine the value of her claim. We resolved her claim informally at a mediation within 9 months of commencement and without her matter proceeding to a final court hearing in the District Court of New South Wales.

How can we help you just like we helped Jenny?

If you or anyone you know has suffered physical or psychiatric injury, death or a complication as a result of negligent medical treatment at a hospital, we will help you secure the compensation you deserve, just like we did for Jenny. Our team of specialist medical negligence lawyers is experienced in acting for patients and their families in respect of negligent medical treatment received in public and private hospitals all around Australia. We understand the devastating effects of having suffered an injury or a worsened medical condition, or loss of a loved one, because of negligent hospital treatment.

*Disclaimer: This is intended as general information only and not to be construed as legal advice. The above information is subject to changes over time. You should always seek professional advice before taking any course of action.*

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Yevgeni Shkuratov
Partner

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Another successful medical negligence claim for a couple
Another successful medical negligence claim for a couple