Delayed diagnosis resulting in permanent disability following the development of cauda equina syndrome

Mr H was unable to return to work as a bus driver. As a result of the delay in diagnosis and surgery he suffers from permanent back pain and problems with urinary and bowel continence.

A partner in the clinical negligence department, negotiated a settlement of £250,000.00 on behalf of Mr H, who was 51 when he presented at hospital with symptoms of cauda equina syndrome. The correct diagnosis was not made until two weeks later.

Case report: delayed diagnosis resulting in permanent numbness following the onset of cauda equina syndrome

Our client attended A & E following a significant worsening of her pre-existing back pain. She was also complaining of bowel and bladder dysfunction. An MRI was performed and she was incorrectly advised that this was normal and she was referred for physiotherapy.

Her symptoms persisted and her GP referred her to a neurosurgeon at a different hospital where she was seen 3 months after her initial attendance at hospital. The neurosurgeon reviewed the earlier MRI and correctly diagnosed cauda equina syndrome.

Despite immediate surgery she was left with permanent nerve damage. We obtained evidence which confirmed that the nerve damage would have been avoided with earlier treatment. Liability was admitted after we served a Letter of Claim.

A Partner, negotiated a £75,000 settlement on behalf of a woman who suffered permanent perineal numbness as a result of a delay in diagnosing cauda equina syndrome.

For confidential advice on how we can help you make a medical negligence claim for this condition contact us on 0113 2845000 or