Hip Replacements and Revisions - Clinical Negligence

Hip Replacement Surgery

The entire hip can be replaced or only a part of it. Alternatively, the surface of part of the joint can be removed and replaced if only a small part of it requires improvement. In this instance, the option is then retained for a more significant procedure in the future.

Most modern replacements are expected to last for a minimum of 10 years (it may be considerably longer) before the recipient need contemplate another.

The most likely reason for the surgery will be the deterioration of the joint due to “old age”; this being the layman’s explanation for what may be the normal ageing and degeneration of the hip joint, or else arthritis affecting it, or a combination of both.

Secondly, it might be necessitated by a sudden traumatic event or incident such as an accident.

Thirdly, surgery might have been required due to an issue with the joint that had been present since the person’s birth (a “congenital defect”).

Many of us will know someone who has had a hip replaced and whose life was changed unrecognizably as a result.

The days when the patient had to spend several weeks post operatively in bed have long since passed. In this day and age, prosthetic hip joints (whether plastic or metallic) are lighter, more flexible, and afford far more mobility.

These days, since this surgery is still a very serious operation but common place nevertheless, clinicians are far more expert and errors are less likely to occur however when they do, given that the hip is the ball and socket joint from where the entire movement of the upper leg moves, the consequences can be devastating.

If the error (or omission) was beyond the scope of what we are entitled to expect from a reasonable surgeon to such an extent that it was negligent, a claim for compensation for the pain and suffering sustained, and the financial ramifications of the error, can be made.

Since the surgery is likely to have been performed in a Hospital, the surgeon him/herself will not be responsible for making the payments to you but the Trust (or private hospital) itself.

What can go wrong?

Compensation due to clinical negligence emanating from this procedure can come about as a result of any of the following (this is not intended to be an exhaustive list but a guide to the most common complaints in our experience only):-

a) the prosthetic joint may be defective and result in an additional surgery to remove it and install an appropriate one; we have had cases where by the time the defect has been noted, the patient has become too infirm to tolerate a further procedure and had to endure the dreadful effects of the error for the remainder of her life;

b) the prosthesis may be too large or too small for the particular patient; this can lead to enormous pain and distress; we have dealt with such cases recently.

c) the prosthesis may not be inserted correctly but wrongly positioned, with a resulting lack of mobility, the reverse of what was expected, as well as substantial and prolonged pain.

d) Other surgical error not specifically related to hip replacement but for example where swabs or small clinical materials are left in situ; this is less rare than most might think and is a risk in all surgical procedures.

What would Lloyd Green do to help ?

Unlike many other firms that may at first seem attractive but in practice use unqualified staff, Lloyd Green employ only experienced solicitors to handle your claim.

Following an initial sympathetic and entirely confidential discussion with our clinical negligence team, we will advise you as to whether you have a viable claim for compensation, and then, working closely with experienced independent clinicians, we will deal with your claim as swiftly as the legal system can possibly allow.

We will vigorously represent your interests and stand robustly in your corner from start to end of the whole process.

It is always a stressful, indeed distressing, time when contemplating making a claim at all, but we will strive to make this as painless as possible.

For a no obligation, free initial consultation, please call us at your complete convenience and we will lead you through what is required to either make an informal internal complaint to the organisation in question, or otherwise to institute a legal claim which, if we can help, will be on a no win no fee basis.

 





 

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