• Helen Dolan, specialist catastrophic medical negligence lawyer, recovered compensation in excess of £29million for clients with a brain injury (including cerebral palsy) in 2016
  • Hugh Potter secured a settlement figure of just under £13 million thanks to change in discount rate
  • Rachel Rees, expert personal injury lawyer, recovered over £15 million in compensation for clients with a brain injury last year

Brain injuries caused by clinical negligence

Potter Rees Dolan is here to help if mistakes made by medical professionals have resulted in a brain injury for you or your loved one. Brain injuries can have a devastating impact on the individual affected and those around them. They can lead to a lifetime of long-term medical complications, emotional stress and financial hardship for you and your family, which is why we’re here to support you.

We can’t begin to understand how difficult it must be for you and your family in this situation, but our team of expert clinical negligence solicitors have a real insight into the devastation brain injuries can cause and will use their expertise to help where they can.

That’s why you can rely on us at Potter Rees Dolan to help you fight for the financial award you deserve. And we know from first-hand experience just how important a successful claim can be. It can pay for a lifetime of care and therapy for you or your loved one as well as help you ensure your home is properly designed and equipped, improving your quality of life.

Our highly regarded clinical negligence team is made up of Helen Dolan, Lesley Herbertson and Gill Edwards, who all feature in the prestigious Legal 500 and Chambers 2017 guides. One of our guiding principles is to personalise our service for every single person we work with, and put our clients and their best interests first.

Our team is here for you and ready to help you get the support you need. Speak to us on 0800 027 2557. If you’d like one of our solicitors to call you back, fill in the contact form on the side of the page and we’ll call at a time of your choosing.

[Recent case wins]

Helen Dolan secures £8.25 million settlement for brain injured child

Woman left wheelchair-bound after bleed on the brain is left undetected - £2 million

Delay in CT scan left man with severe brain injury - £1.2 million

The brain

The brain is the most complex organ in the human body. It is part of the central nervous system and controls our bodily functions, personality, consciousness, speech, motor functions, and much more.

Brains are divided into numerous sections, with the largest and most significant being the cerebrum.

The cerebrum holds most of your higher brain function and is responsible for coordinating sensory and neural functions. It is also responsible for starting and coordinating voluntary activity in the body, such as movement.

The cerebrum is divided into two halves, called hemispheres. Each hemisphere has a series of sub-sections called lobes; with their own dedicated function. Here’s a breakdown of the four lobes and their respective functions:

  • Frontal lobe - used for decision making, where your personality is formed and where high-level mental processes such as planning take place. It’s also where your short-term memory is housed
  • Temporal lobe - responsible for processing auditory information sent from your ears, but also functions as your language centre, visual memory and stores your emotions
  • Occipital lobe - used for processing information sent from your eyes. This part of your brain processes information very quickly, so your brain can keep up with what you see. It helps you distinguish colour, fast moving objects and other visual cues
  • Parietal lobe - processes information related to your other senses, such as taste and touch.

There are other parts of the brain housed within each of these lobes, such as the thalamus, hippocampus and the cerebellum. Each of these areas of the brain are responsible for very specific functions, such as long-term memory storage and the release of hormones.

What is a brain injury?

A brain injury is where a trauma has been sustained to the head. Brain injuries are classified into two categories:

  • Traumatic brain injury (TBI) - a blow or jolt to the head or a penetrating head injury that results in the disruption of normal brain function. TBIs vary in severity depending on how strong the blow or jolt was in the initial instance
  • Acquired brain injury (ABI) - usually caused by medical conditions, such as stroke, anoxia, meningitis, tumours and aneurysms.

Types of brain injury

The brain governs every single part of your body, and as a consequence brain injuries can have devastating consequences for those that suffer them.

Brain injuries often lead to a change in personality, memory loss, severe loss of mobility and loss or impairment of speech.

Usually, the part of the brain that is injured determines what kind of brain injury is sustained.

Some examples of conditions that can lead to brain injuries include:

  • Subarachnoid haemorrhage
  • Intracerebral haemorrhage
  • Oedema
  • Brain aneurysm
  • Brain tumour or abscess
  • Stroke
  • Meningitis
  • Cerebral palsy

Medical negligence

You may have been a victim of medical negligence if mistakes made by doctors, surgeons or other healthcare professionals have led you to suffer a brain injury. Some instances of negligence include:

  • Mistakes during surgery
  • Complications after surgery
  • Failure to diagnose or treat a cerebral bleed
  • Delay in treating raised intracranial pressure
  • Mismanagement of medication resulting in brain injury
  • Delay in diagnosis and treatment of brain tumour or abscess

Life after brain injury

As the brain is a key part of your body, injuries sustained to this area can have devastating consequences. Victims often require lifelong help and support for themselves and their loved ones. Things you may have to think about include:

  • Requiring carers to assist with day to day tasks
  • Rehabilitation to retrain your body to perform tasks such as walking or holding objects
  • Making alterations to your home to improve access including specialist equipment
  • Speech therapy to improve language and communication skills
  • Re-learning how to perform routine jobs and activities

Compensation is extremely important to ensure victims of brain injuries caused by medical negligence can afford to cover the cost of such important changes to your life.

How we can help

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 2017 says: “A source describes Helen Dolan as ‘formidable in her knowledge of the law and medicine,’ adding: ‘She's one of the best clinical negligence solicitors in Manchester.’”

Chambers 2017 says, Lesley Herbertson “plays a crucial role in many of the firm’s diverse clinical negligence cases. A commentator highlights her “understanding of cases and the way she moves cases forward," while another interviewee adds: ‘She is an extremely bright lawyer who is lovely with clients and keen to put them at ease’.”

Gill Edwards is described as being “well regarded for work on catastrophic injury in both adults and children. Her background as a registered general nurse aids her in issues of medical negligence. One source notes that ‘she is really lovely with clients, very thorough, and has a warm personality.’”

Our clients tell us 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.

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 you have a case or not. If we agree that you do, we will help you gather all of the necessary evidence to build a strong case. We do this to make sure we can give you the best chance 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 ascertained you have been a victim of clinical negligence, we will initiate court proceedings. We will progress the claim as quickly as possible, whilst always exploring opportunities to adequately settle the case early.

Where possible, we also work towards obtaining early interim awards. In the case of brain injuries, interim payments are vital to pay for things like rehabilitation, care, counselling and funds to improve access in your home.

Contact us today

Please do not delay, give us a call on 0800 027 2557. We understand from first-hand experience how devastating brain injuries can be, and we’re ready to get you the help and support you deserve. If you’d like one of our solicitors to give you a call back, fill out 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.

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