£20,000 recovered for hip replacement failure

Our client, a 59 year old woman at the time, underwent a right total hip replacement under the care of Mr Hammer at the Medway Maritime Hospital on 06.05.08.

Following the operation she had problems including a leg length discrepancy and pain in the hip. She had a limp and required a shoe raise.

She was investigated extensively over the next couple of years, and underwent physiotherapy, without benefit.

It was not until she sought a second opinion that it became clear that the total hip replacement had not been performed properly.

Our client required a revision right total hip replacement on 23.05.11 for the “proper positioning of the appropriately sized cup”.

Subsequently, our client made a very good recovery, and suffers only relatively minor symptoms relating to the right hip now – much as she could have expected had the original operation been performed properly.

The Defendant swiftly notified us that they would not be defending the claim, and settlement was reached shortly afterwards in the sum of £20,000.

Alex Tengroth, who had conduct of the claim, commented:

Poor outcomes from total hip replacement surgery are all too common, although not always the result of negligence. Such surgery is not an exact science and there is a range of outcomes – such as (up to) a 2cm leg length discrepancy – which are accepted as reasonable by orthopaedic surgeons.

In this particular case, we were assisted by the very clear operation note made during the revision surgery which was clear in concluding that the errors during the original surgery were not merely within an ‘acceptable range’.

A good settlement has been achieved, and it is anticipated that my client will not have any further problems as a consequence of the original negligent surgery.