A patella fracture is when the kneecap breaks, causing a degree of pain and discomfort. Unfortunately, there are scenarios where medical malpractice could lead to an undiagnosed patella fracture, which could cause additional complications later in life. If you have been the victim of medical negligence, you could be searching for legal support on how to make a claim? Throughout this guide, it will outline how our panel of solicitors could be of assistance to those who are seeking compensation. If when reading this guide you have additional questions, why not contact a member of our team? Our phone lines are free to call, and our experienced advisers are always happy to speak with you.
Choose A Section
- A Guide To Claiming For A Missed Patella Fracture
- What Is A Missed Or Undiagnosed Patella Fracture?
- Causes Of Medical And Fracture Misdiagnosis
- What Are The Symptoms Of Patella Fractures?
- How Patella Fractures May Be Diagnosed And Treated
- Could I Claim Compensation For An Undiagnosed Fracture?
- Claims For Patella Fractures Misdiagnosed By A GP
- Claims For Patella Fractures Misdiagnosed By Hospitals
- What Are My Rights As A Patient Of The NHS?
- Medical Misdiagnosis Claim Time Limits
- Missed Patella Fracture Compensation Calculator
- No Win No Fee Missed Patella Fracture Claims
- Start Your Claim Today
- Supporting Resources
We install a significant amount of trust into medical professionals, as they have extensive knowledge that can aid our pain and suffering. When visiting a medical professional with regards to an injury, the treatment you’ll receive will be of a high standard. However, there are some unfortunate situations where a medical professional could deviate from their duty of care, causing injury or suffering. If medical malpractice leads to a misdiagnosis of a patella fracture, it could lead to life-altering health implications. Within this online guide, it shall discuss how a breach in the duty of care could lead to a patella fracture being misdiagnosed or untreated. This online guide shall answer critical questions, such as:
- What is a personal injury claim?
- What is a patella injury?
- How could medical negligence cause me harm?
- Could I claim for medical malpractice?
- What is a No Win No Fee agreement?
- How could Medical Negligence Assist help me throughout the claims process?
This guide will provide an informative and clear understanding of personal injury claims, medical negligence, and patella fractures. If you have questions after reading this guide, why not contact a member of our team? Our knowledgeable advisers are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to take your call and speak with you.
A fracture is a common type of injury, and various parts of the body can be fractured, one of them being the patella. The patella also referred to as the kneecap, is a small bone located in front of the knee joint. The patella is where the tibia (shinbone) and femur (thigh bone) meet, and it protects and joints the muscles in front of the thigh, down to the tibia. A patella fracture is a break of the knee, and it can be a painful experience. Typically, an injury of this nature is caused by:
- A hard blow to the knee
- Falling directly onto the knee
Occasionally, a patella fracture could be caused by indirect damage to the body. For example, a contraction of the thigh muscle. When a fracture of this nature isn’t diagnosed promptly, it can inflict additional pain, lead to incorrect healing and cause further complications.
Unfortunately, there are numerous reasons why a patella fracture could go misdiagnosed or untreated. To accurately diagnose a patella fracture, a medical professional should offer an X-ray and a physical examination of the injury. If a medical professional does not identify with the symptoms of a fractured patella, it is unlikely that diagnostic tests will be performed therefore there will be no treatment plan and the patient could go on to suffer a lot more than they needed to.
A patella fracture could go undiagnosed if:
- A medical professional fails to spot the fracture on the X-ray.
- An inexperienced doctor fails to request an X-ray.
- The view of the X-ray is incorrect (failing to locate the injury).
- An X-ray isn’t offered to the injured individual (due to the symptoms of the injury).
- The X-ray results weren’t passed onto the doctor, so the appropriate action was not taken.
A patellar dislocation is very different from a fracture. An injury of this nature refers to the patella (kneecap) slipping out of its normal position. A patella fracture refers to a break in the kneecap, and some of the most common symptoms of a patellar fracture include swelling and sharp pain. Other symptoms of a patella injury could consist of:
- The inability to walk
- Unable to straighten or elevate the knee.
A patella fracture shares common symptoms to other injuries, such as bruising and swelling. Due to the common symptoms of the fracture, this could lead to a medical professional wrongfully diagnosing the injury. When visiting a medical professional regarding your injury, it is always advised that you are as descriptive as possible. An untreated patella fracture could lead to some serious health implications. If left untreated, a patella fracture will not heal by itself. Instead, the condition and integrity of the bone will deteriorate, causing additional complications. For example, an untreated patella fracture could lead to:
- Physical Limitations
- Pain & Suffering
- Loss of Knee Motion
- Patellofemoral Osteoarthritis
To officially diagnose a patella injury, a medical professional might perform a variety of tests. To gain a greater understanding of the damage, a medical professional could perform X-rays, ultrasounds, computed tomography (CT), or a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). The most common and effective method to diagnose a patella fracture is through an X-ray, as it can provide a detailed outlook of the knee, its joints, and the bones. In the event you experience a patella fracture, you might question if there are steps, treatment and exercises to help aid the pain? Once you have seen a medical professional regarding your injury, the NHS has outlined steps you could consider:
- Cold Packs – Using a cold compress (like frozen peas or an ice pack) can provide short term pain relief.
- Rest and Elevation – Resting the foot for the first 24 to 72 hours will help the injury begin to heal. Raising the foot above the level of your hips can reduce swelling.
- Early Weight-bearing and Exercise – Putting weight onto your injured leg while wearing a splint can help increase the speed of the healing process. It is also essential to move the affected area during the recovery process, as helps the healing process and creates circulation.
When visiting a medical professional with regards to an injury, it is understandable to expect a high standard of treatment. After all, medical professionals are held to a high code of ethics, and we install a level of trust in their professional opinion. However, if a medical professional were to deviate from their duty of care, it could lead to a patella fracture going misdiagnosed or improperly treated.
GP’S are required to uphold a high code of ethics, which has been outlined by the General Medical Council (GMC). The GMC state that medical professionals must:
- Work with open Communication
- Understand and recognise their limitations
- Keep a high standard of knowledge and skills
- Make sure the welfare of the patient is the number one priority
If a patient was to visit a GP with regards to a patella fracture concern, the GP should provide them with information and answer their questions. If a GP isn’t able to identify a fracture, they should recommend the patient to someone for a second opinion (such as a specialist). If a GP fails to follow the appropriate protocol, it could cause the patient’s injury to go unacknowledged, inflicting a degree of pain and suffering. In the event, this occurs and pain is inflicted, the patient could have grounds to claim compensation.
Much like a GP or nurse, hospital staff owe you a duty of care when being treated. If the professionals at the A&E fail to acknowledge or treat your injury, it could lead to additional pain, discomfort, and health-related complications. To be able to make a successful medical negligence claim for missed patella fracture the onus is on the claimant to prove that during the assessment the medical professional acted in a neglectful way which lead to the misdiagnoses, consequently, the claimant suffers far worse symptoms than if the negligent action had not taken place.
The NHS Constitution for England states that the NHS should:
- Provide accessible healthcare
- Provide a professional standard of health care
- Understand and respect patients confidentiality
- Make decisions that are clear, concise, and transparent
- Provide treatments, drug and programmes that are nationally approved
If you’ve endured additional pain and suffering due to the negligence of a medical professional, you could have grounds to make a claim for compensation. To make a claim of this nature, you must begin your claim within the personal injury claims time limit. The time limit for a personal injury claim is three years. The time limit could begin once a delayed or misdiagnosed injury is officially recognised by a medical professional. For more information, please speak to a member of our team today.
When pursuing a claim for compensation, two categories of damages ould be taken into consideration. The categories are known as General Damages and Special Damages, and in this section, we shall explore them in greater length. General Damages could be awarded to those that endure a degree of physical injury or psychological trauma after an accident. A medical assessment (followed by a medical report) will be required to make a claim for General Damages. Within the report, it should outline the type of injury and the severity of the damage.
In some situations, those making a claim might question how much compensation they could be entitled to? We have provided a personal injury claims calculator which provides those seeking compensation some estimated totals. The information within the table is based on the Judicial College Guidelines. It is worth remembering that all claims for compensation are unique, and the compensation that could be awarded will reflect the damages endured. Therefore, the compensation you could be entitled to may differ from the figures that are listed in the table.
|Injury||The Severity of the Injury||Compensation Awarded||Injury Description|
|Knee Injury||Moderate||Up to £12,900||An injury of this bracket includes serious and short periods of acceleration, lacerations, twisting, and bruising. It is also expected to include continuous aching, discomfort, and the occasional pain.|
|Knee Injury||Moderate||£13,920 to £24,580||An injury of this nature includes dislocation, torn cartilage, or meniscus.|
|Knee Injury||Serious||£24,580 to £40,770||An injury of this nature would lead to disability, with continuing symptoms of pain, discomfort, limited mobility, and deformity.|
|Knee Injury||Moderate Serious||£48,920 to £65,440||Within this bracket, the injury could involve a leg fracture that extends into the knee join. In most cases, this would lead to limited movement, impaired agility, and places the person at risk of arthroplasty.|
|Knee Injury||Severe||£65,440 to £90,290||An injury of this nature refers to the disruption of the joint, the development of osteoarthritis, gross ligamentous damage, and lengthy treatment. Due to the type of injury, it will lead to the loss of function and pain.|
|Leg Injuries||Minor||£8,550 to £13,210||An injury of this nature would involve a simple fracture of a femur with no damage to the Articular Surfaces.|
|Leg Injuries||Minor||Up to £11,110||In this bracket, this injury would involve a simple fracture to the tibia or fibula, or involve soft tissue injuries.|
|Leg Injuries||Moderate||£16,860 to £26,050||An injury of this nature relates to fractures where an incomplete recovery is made. In most cases, the injured person will have made a reasonable recovery, however, they will be left with mental implant and/or defect sensory loss, discomfort, and a limp.|
In this section, we shall discuss Special Damages. Special Damages are much different from General Damages, as they are awarded to those who face a financial loss. When claiming compensation, monetary loss (caused by accident) could be taken into consideration. We have provided some examples to illustrate the different type of financial loss that could occur after an accident;
- The Loss of Potential Earnings – If an accident renders you unable to work, you could lose out on potential earnings during the recovery process. If you suffered a financial loss due to your inability to work, then the loss of potential profits could be factored into your claim.
- Medical Expenses – If you had to personally fund any medical treatment, such as prescription costs or surgery, this could be taken into consideration.
- Travel Costs – After an accident, you might be unable to operate your car. During this period, you might use public transportation. The cost of public transit could be factored into your claim for compensation.
- Aftercare – If you require help to perform daily tasks, you might need the help of another. If that is the case, then the cost of care could be taken into consideration.
- Equipment – If you require equipment after an accident (like a chair lift or motorised scooter), this cost could be factored into a claim for compensation.
If a claimant has valid grounds to make a claim, then a solicitor from our panel could offer to handle the claim under a No Win No Fee agreement. A No Win No Fee agreement may also be referred to as a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA), which acts as a formal contract between the personal injury solicitor and the claimant. An arrangement of this nature reduces the threat to the claimant’s finances and eliminates any up-front fees. If a solicitor were to take on a claim under this financial arrangement, they could provide the claimant with support and legal guidance throughout the claims process.
If the solicitor is successful at attaining an awarded settlement, the claimant would be required to pay a success fee for the services that have been provided. By law, this fee is capped at 25%, but the percentage will be negotiated between both parties ahead of time. If a solicitor takes on a claim but fails to attain an awarded settlement, the No Win No Fee agreement reduces the threat to the claimant’s finances. This means the claimant isn’t required to pay the solicitors legal fees. If you have any questions regarding No Win No Fee agreements and how they work, please contact a member of our team. One of our advisers can discuss CFA’s in greater length and answer any questions that you might have.
To begin a personal injury claim with a solicitor from our panel, why not speak to a member of our team? Our experienced and well-informed advisers can provide free legal advice (of no obligation) and answer any questions that you might have. Our phone lines are free to call, and our advisers are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Alternatively, you could enquire online regarding your potential claim. Upon submission, a member of our team will review your online query and contact you.
If you wish to speak with an adviser, the number to call is 0800 652 3087.
To enquire online through our form, please click here.
Being injured is never a predictable event, so we hope that this online guide has provided you with clarity and useful information. In connection with the theme of the guide, we have provided some additional resources that could be of use.
Could I Make A Claim Against A Negligent GP?
Could I Make A Claim For A Misdiagnosis?
NHS – Knee Injury
What To Do If You’re Experiencing Knee Pain.
Written by Michael
Edited by LisM.