£250,000 for Delayed Diagnosis of Cardiomyopathy

30th November 2021 – Our client, a young female from Herne Bay underwent an echocardiogram in 2012 which identified left bundle branch block and reduced ejection fraction in her left ventricle (35%) which was not acted on by the reviewing physician Dr Barton of East Kent Hospitals University NHS Foundation Trust.As a result our client’s diagnosis of dilated cardiomyopathy was delayed by three years and she suffered injuries including grossly impaired left ventricular function, hospitalisation for pulmonary oedema and a stroke.

Prior to being diagnosed she had a very difficult pregnancy complaining of extreme tiredness, sickness and breathlessness. Her son was born whilst she was a full time university student and at this stage she was keen to focus on her teaching career.

However shortly after giving birth our client was admitted to hospital with heart failure and then within days suffered a stroke.

In the aftermath of the stroke she suffered visual disturbance, migraines, slurred speech and fatigue and by the end of 2016 treating doctors diagnosed non epileptic attack disorder (NEAD).

These were long term injuries which impaired our client’s ability to work and look after her young son.

Our client instructed Fairweathers to investigate a claim on her behalf. In April 2018 a Letter of Claim was sent to East Kent Hospitals University NHS Foundation Trust. After completing its own investigations the Trust admitted liability but strangely denied the negligence was causative of loss. The Trust’s failure to adopt a sensible approach at this stage necessitated Court proceedings during which they continued to assert our client would have got pregnant and suffered a stroke in any event and alternatively if she had been informed of her diagnosis in 2012 she would have developed largely similar symptomology in any event.

In order to respond to these arguments detailed witness statements were taken from friends and family and reports obtained from medical experts within the niche specialisms of cardiology, stroke, functional disorders and neuropsychiatry.

Ultimately as Trial approached the Defendant engaged in sensible settlement discussions which achieved a satisfactory damages settlement in the sum of £250,000.

Steve Evans, Senior Solicitor at Fairweathers Solicitors LLP, said “After years of work and unavoidable delays caused by the Covid 19 pandemic, I am very pleased that our client now has funds to pay for specialist treatment and some financial security for her family. Although a Trial was avoided it is a pity the Defendant did not make realistic settlement offers at an earlier stage.”

Our client commented “Thank you very much for not only being professional but incredibly kind and patient with helping our family get back on track. The support given from the team has changed our lives.”

If you or your family need the assistance of an experienced team of Clinical Negligence Solicitors surrounding an inquest or civil claim then please do not hesitate to phone us free on 0800 999 5585, request a call back or submit your case details.