• We are extremely proud to have secured over £100 MILLION in damages for our clients between 2018 and 2019!
  • We're delighted to be featured in the Times Best Law Firms 2019 guide under personal injury
  • Potter Rees Dolan were on the Legal 500 Awards 2018 insurance shortlist for the North West

Amputation Caused by Clinical Negligence

Potter Rees Dolan’s expert team of clinical negligence solicitors are here to help when mistakes made by medical professionals have resulted in an amputation.

We can’t begin to imagine to understand how hard it must be for you in this situation, but we have seen first-hand the impact amputation has on individuals and their families.

You can rely on our clinical negligence solicitors to fight for the compensation you deserve. And we know just how important a successful claim can be. It can help you make the necessary adaptations to your home, get the care you need, pay for expensive rehabilitation and help you purchase cutting edge prostheses that will improve your quality of life.

Our highly regarded clinical negligence team is led by Helen Dolan, Lesley Herbertson and Gill Edwards, who all feature in the prestigious Legal 500 and Chambers 2018 guides. One of our guiding principles is to personalise our service for every single person we work with and put our clients first.

We are here for you and we’re ready to help you get the support you need. Call us on 0800 027 2557. If you would prefer not to speak to us on the phone please fill in the contact form on the side of the page, and a solicitor will get back to you at a time more suitable for you.

What is amputation?

An amputation is the surgical removal of a part of the body. This can either be a limb, such as a leg or an arm, but can also include digits such as fingers and toes.

What causes amputation?

In almost all cases, surgeons will only ever amputate as a last resort. Some common reasons for amputation are:

  • Major trauma to a limb, including crush and blast wounds
  • Severe infection of a limb
  • Deformation of a limb that has limited movement and function
  • Blockage of blood flow to a limb, resulting in compartment syndrome or similar

What are the signs that clinical negligence led to an amputation?

You may have been a victim of clinical negligence if mistakes made by healthcare professionals have resulted in an amputation. Some examples of negligence that could lead to an amputation include:

  • Delayed diagnosis of compartment syndrome
  • Contracting infections during your hospital stay, which results in the need to amputate
  • Failing to diagnose circulatory issues such as deep vein thrombosis (DVT)
  • Amputating the wrong limb or too much of a limb
  • Pressure sores or other wounds that may have been incorrectly managed
  • Poor management of peripheral vascular disease
  • Uncontrolled or badly managed diabetes

About Potter Rees Dolan

Potter Rees Dolan’s clinical negligence team has earned a reputation as one of the very best in the UK. Boasting a combined experience in serious injury law of over 60 years and comprehensive medical insight, the team has an unwavering dedication to help families recover the compensation they deserve.

About Helen Dolan, head of the department, Chambers 2018 says: “Helen is scrupulous in her preparation and organisation, highly experienced, and her knowledge and insight was extremely reassuring.

Chambers 2018 says, Lesley Herbertson “has recently handled a delay of treatment case concerning cauda equina. She has additional capabilities in assisting with failings in district nursing and delays in diagnosis leading to brain injuries.

Gill Edwards is described as being and "exceptionally good solicitor" and garners praise from a client who says: "The way that she helped me is amazing. She is fantastic’."

About our clinical negligence team, our clients are quoted in Chambers 2018 saying: "it was the personal attention we received, the knowledge of the specific needs and future hopes of the claimant, and consideration for our family life that made the firm the right match for us."

Our clients tell us that it is the empathy and care with which we act that sets us apart. We specialise in serious and catastrophic injuries, so we know how difficult it can be to live with severe disability. It is our aim therefore, to make the claim process as stress-free for you and your family as we can.

Funding

Most clinical negligence cases are funded on the basis of a “no win, no fee” agreement, otherwise known as a Conditional Fee Agreement. We can investigate your potential claim and you will not have to pay us a penny if your case is not successful. We will explain how a Conditional Fee Agreement works at our very first meeting.

You may already have a legal expense insurance policy. In the first instance, we’ll always start by investigating whether you can use the same policy for your case, before we consider whether a Conditional Fee Agreement is more appropriate.

What happens next?

First, we will discuss your circumstances in detail and help you understand whether or not you have a case. If you do, we will help you gather all of the necessary evidence to build a strong case. We do this to make sure that we give you the best chance of success and to recover the right amount of compensation.

Your medical records are our first point of call - we will obtain them and go through them with you in depth.

We will then instruct independent experts to advise whether or not you or your family member has received substandard treatment. Once we have positive expert evidence in support of your claim, we will start court proceedings. We will progress the claim as quickly as possible, whilst always exploring opportunities to adequately settle the case early if we can.

Where possible, we also work towards obtaining early interim awards. For those who have suffered amputation, interim payments are particularly useful for things like rehabilitation, prosthetics, and funds to improve access in your home.

Related Case Studies

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Contact Potter Rees Dolan today

Our sensitive and caring Manchester based team are ready to help you get the support you need. Please don’t delay - give us a call on 0800 027 2557. If you’d like one of our solicitors to call you back, fill out the form on the side of the page or visit our contact page. If there is someone specific at the firm you would like to speak to, visit their profile on our people page.

FAQs

What are the complications of amputations?

As with any kind of surgery, amputations carry a risk. Complicating factors include; age, your general health and the nature of the surgery itself. Issues that can arise following the loss of a limb include:

  • DVT
  • Stump and phantom limb pain
  • Necrosis
  • Infection

Living with amputation

Amputations can turn your whole life upside down. As well as just coming to terms with the loss of a limb, you will probably need to make significant alterations to your day-to-day life. You may have to change jobs, or perhaps you won’t be able to work at all. You could also face considerable financial costs when undertaking rehabilitation and sourcing prostheses to suit you.

Things you may have to think about include:

  • Requiring carers to assist with day to day tasks
  • Sourcing a prosthesis to aid mobility and improve your quality of life
  • Making changes to your home to improve access
  • Undergoing rehabilitation to strengthen the muscle and tissue in the surrounding area
  • Re-learning how to perform routine jobs and activities

Useful Information

Chronic kidney disease

This long-term condition results in kidneys not functioning correctly or working effectively.

Symptoms of chronic kidney disease are not usually noticeable until later stages but it is usually detected at the early stages with blood and urine tests. Many symptoms of advanced kidney disease include:

  • tiredness
  • swollen ankles, feet or hands (due to water retention)
  • shortness of breath
  • nausea
  • blood in the urine

The kidneys' function is to filter the waste products from the blood before converting into urine. Our kidneys also help maintain blood pressure and the levels of chemicals in your body which help the heart function properly.

Chronic kidney disease is more likely to form the older you get and there is no cure. However, treatment can slow the progression of the disease.If the kidneys are damaged with diabetes or high blood pressure for example, then chronic kidney disease can develop.

Those with chronic kidney disease are more likely to have a heart attack due to the changes that occur in the blood circulation.

Read how a diabetic clinical negligence client of Lesley Herbertson underwent a leg amputation after he had an organ transplant due to chronic kidney disease.

Compartment Syndrome

This is a painful, and potentially serious condition, where an enclosed body space (such as a bundle of muscles or tissue) swells and so pressure increases.

Pressure builds within the compartment which affects the function of the muscle and tissue.

There is then a lack of oxygenated blood to the area which can cause the tissue to die. If left untreated, then it could result in a loss of a limb.

Read about our client who was wrongly diagnosed with Deep Vein Thrombosis when in fact she had compartment syndrome. She was diagnosed too late which resulted in an above knee amputation.

Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT)

This is a blood clot in one of the deep veins in the body, usually in the large vein in the leg.

The blood clot can cause pain and swelling in the leg and can lead to complications such as pulmonary embolism.

Anyone can develop deep vein thrombosis but those with a family history, who are overweight or with other medical conditions such as cancer can be more at risk.

Another common cause of DVT is after undergoing an operation and it's estimated that 25,000 people who are admitted to hospital die from preventable blood clots each year.

This is because if you are unwell or inactive, or less active than you usually are, blood tends to collect in the lower parts of your body due to your lack of movement.

Treatment usually involved taking blood thinning medication to help reduce the blood's ability to clot.

Read about our client who was diagnosed with DVT but then developed compartment syndrome which resulted in her having an above knee amputation the same day.

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