If you sustain a fracture, it is reasonable to assume that a trip to the hospital is the best course of action. With a quick examination and an x-ray, doctors will diagnose the break and treat it accordingly. The last thing you expect is to leave A&E with an undetected fracture. And while this may seem unlikely, it does unfortunately happen more often than you might think. Not only with this prolong the pain and suffering for the person in question, but it will also lead to a series of health complications later down the line.
How Can A Fracture Be Left Untreated?
A fracture can be left untreated for one of two reasons:-
1. On purpose
Some fractures will be left deliberately untreated. For example, if you fracture a rib, it is not possible to apply a plaster cast or provide any other form of treatment (other than painkillers). Instead, the bone must be left to heal of its own accord. Therefore if doctors leave a fracture untreated on purpose, they are knowingly doing so for medical reasons, meaning their actions will not amount to a substandard level of care.
However, there are sadly occasions in which doctors simply fail to detect a fractured bone. This may either be because they do not believe a bone is broken and so fail to perform an x-ray, or they perform an x-ray but do not accurately analyse the image. It is highly likely that this will amount to an incident of medical incompetence, especially if other doctors would have been able to diagnose the fracture. This will, therefore, amount to medical negligence.
Have you suffered from an undiagnosed fracture?
If your fracture was missed by medical professionals, you must contact a medical negligence solicitor as soon as possible. This is because you will be considered the victim of a substandard level of medical care, meaning you are legally entitled to pursue a claim. If successful, you will be awarded compensation for the pain, suffering and loss of amenity an untreated fracture undoubtedly caused you.
Indeed, your life will have been severely hindered while your fracture remained undetected, while the level of treatment may have been more extensive had a cast been applied when you first attended hospital. Broken bones quickly join back together, and if your fracture knitted together in the wrong place, you will require surgery to fix the problem. This could otherwise have been avoided had doctors recognised your injury at the time of the accident.
Additionally, you will be recompensed for the acute financial loss you incurred. So if you were unable to return to work because you were in so much pain, and this caused you to lose money, you will be able to claim this expense back. This also applies to the cost of medical treatment, travel and domestic assistance.
To begin your claim for a missed fracture, contact us at 1stClaims today. We will be more than happy to discuss your case with you.