Our client, a 47 year old woman from Herne Bay, Kent, suffered a gluteal nerve injury during a total hip replacement (THR), performed by Orthopaedic Surgeon Mr Southgate on 23.06.12.
This caused our client to suffer with pain and additional physical restrictions which impacted on her ability to undertake various day to day activities.
Expert evidence from our Orthopaedic Surgeon confirmed that, because injury to this particular nerve is a recognised complication of the way the THR was to be performed (the Hardinge – or lateral – approach), our client should have been warned of the risk of superior gluteal nerve injury and of the functional consequences of such injury (which she was not).
Our expert further confirmed that injury to the superior gluteal nerve arose due to the surgery being performed negligently (by extending the incision too far, and thus injuring the nerve).
Initially, the Defendant put forward a full denial of the claim, such that it was necessary to issue Court proceedings in order to progress the matter. The Defendant then repeated their full denial within their formal Defence.
At the point of witness statement exchange, the Defendant suddenly made an opening offer of £10,000 to settle the claim.
A counter offer of £28,000 was made, which represented the near full value of the claim.
The Defendant rejected that offer, and made a much improved offer of £21,000. This offer was rejected but following further negotiations settlement was reached in the sum of £25,000.
The Claimant, who is very pleased with the level of compensation she will receive, said “I only decided to take this claim forward because nobody would accept responsibility for the outcome of the THR, and nobody would provide me with an apology.
Even now, I would rather have an apology from Mr Southgate, and I remain hopeful, now that the claim has been settled, which I consider to be an acknowledgment of fault, that I will get an apology.”
Kate Virica, who had conduct of this matter, commented:- “This was a highly satisfactory outcome although the fault and liability for my client’s injuries should have been acknowledged much sooner. I wish her all the very best for the future.”