Orthopaedic Negligence Claims
Orthopaedics is the medical specialism that focuses on injuries and diseases of the musculoskeletal system. This includes bones, joints, ligaments, tendons, muscles and nerves. Orthopaedic surgeons specialise in treating bones and muscles throughout the body. They are responsible for everything from diagnosing and treating minor fractures to replacing joints and performing fusion procedures. A huge number of orthopaedic procedures take place each year. The National Joint Registry reports around 160,000 hip and knee joint replacements each year.
Most orthopaedic treatment will be successful. However, sometimes errors can occur and patients can suffer as a result of orthopaedic negligence. A patient may have an orthopaedic negligence claim when they suffer harm that is preventable or a result of negligence by the orthopaedic team. There are many different types of orthopaedic negligence claims. Examples include:
- Delay in or missed diagnosis of a fracture (sometimes this occurs in A&E when an X-ray is misinterpreted)
- Malunion of a fracture due to delay or missed diagnosis of fracture
- Incorrect treatment of fractures
- Delay in diagnosis and treatment of Achilles Tendon injury or other tendon injury
- Errors in performance of ligament repair such as ACL reconstruction
- Errors in performance of joint replacement surgery such as hip, knee, shoulder or elbow replacement
- Incorrect surgical site or incorrect surgical procedure performed
- Poor planning of orthopaedic surgical procedures
- Damage to nerves during during surgery
- Damage to blood vessels and blood circulation
- Delay in diagnosis and treatment of compartment syndrome
Orthopaedic negligence claims can be complex, with a high standard of proof needed to give the best chance of a good outcome. It is therefore critical to get the right legal advice at the earliest opportunity, so your claim can be built the right way from day one.