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Fracture Missed In X-Ray Leaves Man With Permanent Disability

Clinical Negligence lawyer Andrew Bowman has recently won £15,000 in compensation for his client, who has been left with problems with his right hand because a simple fracture was not diagnosed or treated.

James Symonds, from Bristol, came to Irwin Mitchell for help making a claim after his injuries following a mountain bike accident in July 2011 were not diagnosed or treated by Royal Gwent Hospital.

After the bike accident, James was taken to the Royal Gwent Hospital in Newport for treatment. He informed staff at the Hospital that he had hurt his hand, head and collar bone, and was sent for X-rays.

The ring finger of his right hand was X-rayed from two angles but the middle finger was only X-rayed from above. The results of the X-rays confirmed that there was a fracture of the collar bone but did not indicate a fracture to either finger. Mr Symonds was discharged and told that he should be reviewed by his GP in two weeks.

James visited his GP for the review and was told that the fingers should be ok. James was in a lot of pain and the finger was very swollen so, the following day, he attended A&E at the Bristol Royal Infirmary. He was referred to the fracture clinic where further X-rays found that James’ middle finger was fractured and displaced.

Two days later, an emergency operation was performed to break and reset the finger, putting a pin through the bone. Follow up X-rays found that unfortunately the bones of the middle finger had not set properly.

James now has restricted movement and load bearing ability in his middle figure which hinders his work as a graphic designer which requires precise use of his right hand. Experts concluded that had thorough X-rays been performed, and the fracture diagnosed earlier, he would have had a much better result.

James also faces the prospect of having further operations to fuse the bones in the finger, leaving the finger permanently bent. He is also at an increased risk of developing arthritis in the future.

The Health Board concerned admitted negligence and after lengthy negotiations, a settlement of £15,000 in compensation was agreed. This money will help James recover the earnings he lost whilst unable to work and also with his ongoing physiotherapy.

If you or a loved one has suffered due to a delayed or misdiagnosed medical condition, our clinical negligence lawyers could help you claim compensation. See our Medical Misdiagnosis Claims page for more information.

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