Former Project Estimator Says Daily Life Has Been ‘Hugely Compromised’ As Medical Negligence Lawyers Secure Settlement
An Oxfordshire dad-of-one left with restricted hand movement following a delay in treating an infection has spoken out on how his daily life has been “hugely compromised.”
Anthony Burrell, 65, from Bicester, began having issues with his fingers bending inwards in or around 2015. He was subsequently diagnosed with Dupuytren’s contracture, an abnormal thickening of the tissue under the skin on the palm and fingers.
Surgery was performed at the Horton Treatment Centre – which carries out both NHS and private treatments and became The Cherwell Hospital in July this year - to straighten out Anthony’s left index finger by removing the tendon causing the problem. He was discharged the same day.
Over the next two weeks, Anthony’s hand became increasingly swollen. He visited the treatment centre and was advised to keep his hand raised and to use pain relief and an ice pack. Within two days, his hand “looked like a boxing glove” and he had developed night sweats. His wound also began to ooze pus.
Anthony attended A&E where he was found to have an infection and was administered IV antibiotics. He also underwent two operations to repair the infected tendons.
Following the second operation, Anthony instructed medical negligence experts at Irwin Mitchell to investigate whether the infection should have been diagnosed and treated earlier, and to also help him access the specialist therapies he requires as part of his recovery.
The legal team has now successfully secured Anthony a settlement from Ramsay Healthcare, which ran the Horton Treatment Centre, after it admitted liability. It accepted that if antibiotics had been prescribed initially, Anthony would have avoided the severe infection, surgical intervention and long -term difficulties. In a letter to Anthony’s lawyers from NHS Resolution, Ramsay Healthcare apologised for the “shortcomings in the care provided.”
Anthony says: “Before the problems with my hand, my health was in good condition and I considered myself healthy and fit. Since the infection, however, I have struggled a lot doing tasks around the house and it made looking after my disabled wife a lot more difficult.
“Given that the physiotherapy hasn’t improved my hand fully, I have now re-learned how to do simple day-to-day tasks. Simple things such as undoing a bottle cap, using zips and shoelaces or putting washing on the line are frustratingly hard. My day-to-day life has been hugely compromised and I feel things could have turned out so differently had the infection been caught and treated earlier. However, although I can’t change what’s happened; I’m grateful that we have my son to help us wherever needed."
Expert Opinion“The past few years have been incredibly difficult for Anthony, firstly having to undergo surgery on his hand and then being left with ongoing issues after developing infection which wasn’t treated when it should have been.
His case is among a number we’ve come across where unfortunately care hasn’t been up to expected standards and a patient has had to have further treatment to rectify the issue.
While there is nothing we can do to turn back the clock and change what Anthony has gone through, it’s vital that lessons are learned to help prevent others from suffering like he has and hope that measures will be put in place to ensure infections are properly monitored in future and call for these to be implemented as soon as possible.”
Chris Hurlston - Senior Associate Solicitor