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Compensation For Victim Of Rogue Doctor After Unnecessary Cancer Surgery

Our Medical Negligence lawyers secured a significant sum for a woman who had an unnecessary mastectomy performed by Ian Paterson. After years of performing unnecessary surgery on patients, the rogue surgeon was finally charged in May 2017 and sentenced to 15 years in prison.

Our client was one of more than 250 women who were told by Paterson – falsely – that they must have a mastectomy. In 2001 she underwent two mastectomy procedures on Paterson’s advice – the second of which he performed himself.

After this, she had to undergo a further six procedures and reconstructive surgery. She may still face more surgery to put right the damage done by the rogue surgeon. As well as the physical trauma she has endured, she has been left with emotional scars and suffers anxiety, especially at the prospect of more operations.

In 2012 our client was contacted by the hospital where she had been treated, along with hundreds of other former patients of Paterson, when concerns were raised about his methods. Finding out that her surgery had been unnecessary as well as poorly performed, the woman got in touch with our expert Medical Negligence team to investigate the care she received at the NHS hospital.

Our client was one of more than 30 women Irwin Mitchell represented in the case against Paterson. Since the late 90s, the doctor had been exaggerating the risk of cancer to his patients, persuading them to have invasive and disfiguring surgery that they didn’t need.

He also performed partial mastectomies – so-called ‘cleavage-sparing’ surgery – on over 450 women, even after he was instructed not to by his NHS Trust. These operations actually increased the chance of cancer returning and put his patients’ lives at risk. In 2012, he was suspended by the General Medical Council because of these procedures.

Our investigations into this woman’s case found that there would have been other, less invasive options open to her. Like hundreds of other patients, she underwent a life-changing operation that was unnecessary and poorly done, trusting a doctor who grossly abused his position of power.

Paterson was sentenced  at Nottingham Crown Court on 31st May 2017 after a lengthy trial. He was convicted of 17 counts of wounding with intent and three of unlawful wounding. Many of his victims were there and several of their statements were read out, detailing the extent of the emotional and physical damage he had needlessly put them through.

We secured a six-figure settlement for our client that will help her rebuild her life after this ordeal.

Rosalie Reading, an Associate in our Medical Negligence team, said of the case:

“Being diagnosed with breast cancer and undergoing major surgery has a huge impact on people’s lives. To be told that the surgery has been incorrectly performed, and that this may have significantly increased the risk of breast cancer returning, is absolutely devastating for the women affected.

“We are delighted to have secured a settlement for our client and will continue to work to ensure the other women we represent, who have suffered similar issues, get the answers they deserve, as well as fair settlements for the pain and suffering they have endured following treatment from Ian Paterson.”

Our client, who wished to remain anonymous, spoke about her experience:

“For more than ten years I’ve been struggling to come to terms with the procedures I have undergone and the knowledge that they were avoidable and that other, less invasive, procedures were an option for me.

“It is absolutely terrible the impact this surgeon, who I trusted at a very difficult time, has had on not only myself, but the hundreds of other women who have suffered the same experience I have.

“It is a huge relief that I have now received a settlement to cover the years of heartache I have been through and the physical and emotional impact of the procedures I’ve been through. I am now focusing on the future and hope that I can now begin to draw a line under this terrible ordeal and move on with my life knowing Paterson has been held to account.”

If you've suffered negligent medical treatment, contact our team today - we could help you make a compensation claim. You call call us on 0800 121 6567 or fill out our online enquiry form and we'll get back to you. 

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