Man Left Totally Wheelchair Dependent After Contaminated Blood Transfusion

Man Left Totally Wheelchair Dependent After Contaminated Blood Transfusion

A 64-year-old man became infected with HTLV-1, a variant of HIV, after he received a blood transfusion during surgery.

Chris, a keen sportsman and gardener, had undergone a fairly routine operation to remove his pancreas and during the operation, he received five units of blood by way of transfusion.

There were no immediate signs that anything had gone wrong and Chris was told that the operation had been a complete success. Chris was keen to return to work following the operation, and did so several months later, even though he had lost over four stone in weight.

It was not until over around a year later that Chris really began noticing changes to his daily routine, and found that he could not run across the road when he saw a car coming towards him, comparing himself to running on ice.

After this, Chris gradually began to lose sensation in his toes and his walking style altered. Sadly, it was not until a further two years had passed that Chris was finally diagnosed with HTLV-1 after extensive investigations. Chris then had to cope with the stress and stigma of the illness which, like HIV, can be caught as a result of drug abuse, sexual activity, as well as infected blood.

Following investigations it later emerged that at the time of Chris’ operation, The National Blood Service were not screening donated blood for the presence of HTLV-1, even though the existence of this virus was known and that there was a test available which would have detected its presence.

Chris’ solicitor Timothy Deeming, an expert in clinical negligence claims, investigated the case and secured a substantial seven figure settlement in compensation for the pain and suffering Chris went through, together with his lifelong wheelchair support and care that he would need.

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