£400,000 for surgeon’s failure to remove metal work in hip

Our client, Mrs D, from Wiltshire suffered a hip fracture in 2002. Subsequently she had problems during her second pregnancy and decided to have the metal work removed before she had more children. In order to expedite the surgery, the treating surgeon at Salisbury NHS Foundation Trust referred Mrs D to a locum orthopaedic surgeon, Mr Sampalli, who performed surgery in March 2011 with only partial success. 

The proximal screws could not be removed and Mrs D was advised to have further surgery this time with a bespoke rather than universal extraction kit. Mr Sampalli performed further surgery in November 2011 but had to abandon the procedure after removing only the large proximal screw.

Unfortunately, Mrs D’s symptoms deteriorated significantly after the November 2011 surgery and she was eventually referred to pain management after surgeons concluded further surgery would not be in her best interests.

Mrs D instructed this firm to pursue a claim in clinical negligence because she believed that Mr Sampalli had used the wrong extraction kit during the first surgery.

After obtaining the medical records and instructing experts, a Letter of Claim was sent which was met with a denial of liability. Court proceedings were issued in June 2015 to recover damages for chronic pain syndrome and psychological injury. It was alleged that the Defendant failed to have the appropriate equipment available at the first operation and instead used the wrong universal kit. At a later stage, after receiving further advice from our expert, it was alleged that the surgeon negligently failed to advise Mrs D of bony growth after the first operation and refer her to a specialist unit.

Salisbury NHS Foundation Trust maintained its denial of liability throughout the claim but changed tactic during negotiations just weeks before Trial which resulted in our client receiving a settlement worth £400,000.

Steve Evans, the solicitor with conduct of this matter, commented:

“Mrs D suffered life changing injuries at the hands of a surgeon who failed to accept his mistakes. It is to her credit that Mrs D continued with the claim after being invited to discontinue proceedings by the Defendant in 2015.

Although, she has residual pain and suffering she now has funds for pain management treatment and the purchase of a home which will make a significant difference to Mrs D’s quality of life and that of her young family.”