Within this guide to making a compensation claim for a misdiagnosed or overlooked fractured acetabulum, we aim to provide you with the help and advice you need to begin to understand how to make your own claim for a missed broken acetabulum.
Each clam has its own unique aspects, related to why the claim is being made and the harm the claimant suffered. This means that this guide may not cover all of your questions. If this is so, please call our team on 0800 652 3087 and one of our advisors will answer your questions for you. They will also explain to you how a personal injury solicitor can assist you by processing your claim for you.
Choose A Section:
- A Guide To Claiming For A Missed Acetabular Fracture
- What Do We Mean By A Misdiagnosed Fracture?
- Why Diagnostic Failures May Happen
- Causes Of Acetabular Fractures
- Acetabular Fracture Symptoms
- Treating And Diagnosing Acetabular Fracture
- Am I Eligible To Claim Compensation For A Misdiagnosed Injury?
- Claims If A GP Missed An Acetabular Fracture
- Claims If A Hospital Missed An Acetabular Fracture
- Peoples’ Rights When Under Medical Care In The UK
- Medical Negligence Claim Limitation Periods
- Calculating Compensation For A Missed Acetabular Fracture
- No Win No Fee Missed Acetabular Fracture Compensation Claims
- Talk To Our Team
- Supporting Resources
A Guide To Claiming For A Missed Acetabular Fracture
This online guide to making a compensation claim for a missed acetabular fracture should provide you with all of the information that you need to start deciding how best to proceed with your own medical negligence claim. We begin this guide by a basic overview of what a missed fracture is, and why you could be in a position to claim if you suffer one.
The next part of the guide is entirely related to misdiagnosed fractures and the facts about how they happen, etc. We cover the reasons why a fracture can be misdiagnosed and also some of the main causes of acetabular fractures. We go over the major symptoms of an acetabular fracture, and also how they are diagnosed and treated.
The guide then moves on to cover legal aspects of the claim itself. We look at eligibility and why the NHS may be liable for damages. We give specific examples of hospital negligence and GP negligence. Finally, we briefly cover your rights as an NHS patient.
Lastly, this guide will cover some of the financial aspects of making a claim. We have provided a table that is based on the judicial guidelines in England, that can help you to work out how much compensation you could be able to claim. Following this table, you will find a list of some of the most commonly awarded kinds of damages. Finally, we will cover No Win No Fee claims, and how this kind of legal service could help you to make your claim while minimising the financial risks.
If you have questions about the contents of this guide, aspects of your own claim, or the process of making a claim in general, then please call our team. One of our advisors will answer your questions and also explain to you how a medical negligence lawyer could help you get the compensation you are eligible for.
What Do We Mean By A Misdiagnosed Fracture?
A misdiagnosed fracture is a fracture injury that a medical professional fails to find. They might miss the symptoms of a fracture completely, resulting in the fracture being entirely overlooked. Or they could misinterpret the symptoms and diagnose the fracture as a different kind of injury. Both of these eventualities could be caused by a mistake during the process of diagnosis.
A missed fracture can cause the injury to become worse, or for complications to crop up. Both of which will have a negative effect on the health of the patient. If you would like to find out whether you have a valid basis for a negligence claim, please speak to one of our advisors.
Why Diagnostic Failures May Happen
In this section, we try to explain how an acetabulum fracture is misdiagnosed. An acetabular fracture is an injury to the hip, in the pelvis. This is a very hard injury to diagnose without an MRI scan that can expose damage to the surrounding tissue. Some of the reasons this kind of fracture can be misdiagnosed or overlooked completely are:
- Tests such as an MRI scan or an x-ray could be performed improperly, or the equipment could malfunction.
- The patient may not be seen by a qualified doctor but instead handled by a nurse.
- The doctor may not have access to the patient’s full medical history.
- The examining doctor may miss the physical symptoms that suggest a fracture, and not call for further tests.
There are many ways that a fracture can be misdiagnosed or overlooked. If the claimant is harmed because of this kind of negligence, then a claim could be possible. However, the claimant must be able to prove that negligence took place. One of our advisors can provide you with advice on how to do this.
Causes Of Acetabular Fractures
Acetabular fractures vary in severity and complexity. Some breaks to the hip socket will shatter the bones entirely, while others will be hairline fractures that are far less identifiable.
An acetabular fracture can be caused when sheer force drives the top of the femur up into the acetabulum. For example, when a person falls from a height and lands on their feet. Examples of this would include:
- Falling from a height.
- Striking the knee on a car dashboard in a road traffic accident.
- Sports injuries where the victim has jumped and landed on their feet from some height.
Some accidents will only dislocate the hip, but more severe forces could crack it or shatter it entirely.
Another cause of acetabular fractures is a weakened or worn bone. Older people or people with osteoporosis could suffer this kind of fracture, sometimes through nothing more traumatic than just falling.
Acetabular Fracture Symptoms
In order to understand how a missed acetabulum fracture due to medical negligence occurs, we need to first look at the major symptoms of this kind of injury, which are:
- Significant levels of pain in the pelvic region or the upper leg.
- Inability to stand or walk due to extreme pain.
- Possible blood clots visible on the skin, or very serious bruising.
- A feeling of grating or clicking when moving the leg.
A fractured acetabular is a serious traumatic injury in most cases. In extreme cases, and especially when suffered by an elderly person, they can even be life-threatening injuries. Although they are hard to overlook, they could be misdiagnosed. And if this happens, the patient could suffer more harm as the injury worsens. In such cases, if negligence can be proven, then a claim could be possible. An advisor can evaluate your claim for you if you give them a call.
Treating And Diagnosing Acetabular Fracture
The hip is one of the largest joints in the body. Acting as a ball and socket, enabling the hip to move and rotate through a wide range. The acetabulum is the part of the pelvis that creates the socket of the hip joint. When this socket is broken or shattered, this is considered a serious illness and one that is very hard to overlook completely. There is a simple process that a doctor can follow to help them diagnose any fracture, similar to this:
- Physically examine the patient looking for signs of a fracture injury, such as the symptoms we described in the previous section.
- Check the patient’s medical record to see if they are suffering from a medical condition that could leave them prone to fractures. And also to check if the patient has injured their hip in the past.
- Question the patient about how the injury happened, to judge the kinds of force and trauma that were involved.
- If a fracture is suspected, call for an MRI scan, x-ray or some other kind of test that could confirm it.
If a doctor doesn’t follow such a procedure, and a fracture is misdiagnosed due to clinical negligence, then a medical negligence solicitor could be able to help the patient make a claim for the harm they have suffered. If a fracture is diagnosed successfully, the examining doctor will recommend a course of treatment.
Treatment would begin by ensuring the hip is aligned and sitting in the socket correctly. This may require reduction and surgery to accomplish. The better aligned the bone is before it heals, the less the chance of developing a condition such as arthritis later will be.
Once reduction has been accomplished, the patient will then have to rest their hip for possibly several months. It is very hard to immobilise the hip completely. But during this time the patient will be allowed to put their foot on the ground whilst sitting, but not to put any weight on that foot at all. Walking, even using crutches or a frame is out of the question.
Once the hip is sufficiently healed, the patient can begin physiotherapy to start getting their mobility back. This can also take several months if the fracture was especially serious. If you don’t receive this kind of treatment because your fracture was misdiagnosed, then your health will likely suffer. To learn more about this, please speak to one of our advisors.
Am I Eligible To Claim Compensation For A Misdiagnosed Injury?
If a hospital failed to diagnose a fracture, then it might be possible for you to make a personal injury claim for the harm you suffered. But there are two caveats here. Firstly, you need to be able to prove that a medical professional made a mistake, and that clinical negligence took place. Secondly, you must have suffered harm either directly or indirectly due to the mistake that was made by a medical professional. This relates directly to the duty of care that every medical professional has towards their patients. This duty of care can be surmised as no medical professional should ever do unnecessary harm to a patient.
Proving that negligence took place will be the responsibility of the claimant. If the healthcare facility involved decides that negligence did not take place, the claimant must provide evidence showing that it did. This is a pivotal requirement, without proof no claim would be possible. For some advice on how to prove negligence took place, please speak to our team.
Claims If A GP Missed An Acetabular Fracture
Your GP is supposed to perform the initial diagnosis of an injury and then ensure you are referred to the correct healthcare unit for treatment if the GP cannot treat you. Although it is unlikely that anyone would visit their GP with an injury as serious as an acetabular fracture, if they were too, the GP would need to refer them to a hospital.
If the GP doesn’t recognise this fracture for what it is, and this results in you not receiving the proper treatment, then you may be able to make a claim for any harm you suffered. To learn more about GP claims, please speak to one of our advisors.
Claims If A Hospital Missed An Acetabular Fracture
If an acetabulum fracture is missed at a hospital due to negligence, this could be construed as medical negligence. We have already covered the way that this kind of injury is diagnosed, and also how it is treated.
This kind of fracture is quite a serious one, and not likely to be overlooked entirely by a doctor examining a patient at a hospital. However, the doctor could mistake the symptoms for some other medical condition. And in this case, the patient’s health will suffer as the fracture will go untreated. This could be the basis of a negligence claim. Our team can tell you more about making such a claim if you give them a call.
Peoples’ Rights When Under Medical Care In The UK
The NHS provides a number of rights for its patients in relation to NHS negligence and medical malpractice. In relation to this guide, two of them are very important. Firstly, every NHS patient has the right to follow the official complaint procedure, and complain about the treatment they have received.
Secondly, every NHS patient has the right to attempt to claim damages for any harm they have suffered due to negligence. One of our advisors will be able to explain these rights in more detail if you call our team today.
Medical Negligence Claim Limitation Periods
You will need to begin your negligence claim within the personal injury claims time limit. In the UK this time limit is generally three years. The start of the three years depends on the age of the claimant, thus:
- Under the age of 18, 3 years from the claimants 18th
- Over the age of 18, 3 years from the date the negligence occurred, or the date a medical condition caused by negligence is diagnosed.
Calculating Compensation For A Missed Acetabular Fracture
You could use a personal injury claims calculator to get a rough estimate of the value of your claim. You can also check the table below, that was created using the judicial guidelines used by the legal system in England to value injuries.
|Pelvis and hips||Severe||In this category would be severe injuries such as multiple, extensive fractures to the pelvis. With complications like dislocation of the back, a ruptured bladder or damage to a hip. There would be long-term disabilities such as a lack of bowel and bladder control and possible deformity of the hip affecting mobility.||£73,580 to £122,860|
|Pelvis and hips||Moderate||This would be any significant injury of the hip or the pelvis, but any permanent disability would not be serious.||£24,950 to £36,770|
|Pelvis and hips||Lesser||All injuries that will heal eventually over time, and with no permanent impairment at all. Full recovery would be within two years of the injury being caused and treated.||Up to £11,820|
A personal injury lawyer will need to value your claim following a medical examination if you want a more accurate estimate. Call our team for advice on how to arrange this. If your claim is a success, your settlement will be made up of possibly several kinds of damages, for example:
- General damages (physical harm):
- Permanent disability or impairment.
- Psychological issues.
- Pain and suffering.
- Mental shock and trauma.
- Painful treatment and a long recovery.
- Special damages (financial loss):
- Lowered working potential.
- Loss of salary or wages.
- Private medical costs.
- The cost of employing a nurse to care for you.
- Travel tickets, and other out of pocket expenses.
No Win No Fee Missed Acetabular Fracture Compensation Claims
Under a No Win No Fee agreement, your solicitor will not collect their pre-agreed fee until they have received a compensation settlement for you. So, there will be no fee to begin working on your claim, and no fee while the solicitor is processing your claim for you. Also, you will not pay the solicitor’s fee if you don’t get any compensation, because your claim failed.
As you can see, you really do not pay your solicitor’s fees until your claim has reached a positive outcome, and you have been awarded compensation. This means that many of the financial risks involved in making a claim are mitigated. Speak to our claims team for more information today.
Talk To Our Team
Do you think you have a valid reason to claim compensation for the misdiagnosis of a fracture? Do you think a personal injury lawyer could help you to claim the compensation you are eligible for? Or do you just have some simple questions about the process of making a claim? If so, we can help you. First, you should contact our team on 0800 652 3087. One of our advisors will talk over your claim with you, tell you what your legal options are, and then offer some free legal advice on how best to proceed with your negligence claim.
You can check these external pages, they all have useful additional information:
Read over these other guides for further advice:
Written by Mac
Edited by LisM.