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Meningitis Medical Negligence

Bacterial Meningitis Claims

Bacterial meningitis is a life-threatening condition that requires immediate medical treatment. If doctors fail to provide such urgent treatment – perhaps because of a delay in diagnosis – there could be grounds for a medical negligence claim. If you or a loved one has been affected because medical professionals did not manage an episode of meningitis to an acceptable standard, you need to talk to a solicitor about making a claim.

Treating bacterial meningitis

Bacterial meningitis occurs when a certain type of bacteria (usually the Neisseria meningitidis bacteria) enters the body – usually via the nose or mouth. In the majority of cases, these bacteria will live in the body quite harmlessly, causing no problems whatsoever.

However, in some people the bacteria will cross into the bloodstream. Scientists remain unsure as to how this happens. But what is certain is that once the meningitis bacteria get into the blood, a person will become extremely unwell, suffering symptoms such as headaches, vomiting, aching joints, fever, a stiff neck, an aversion to light and a rash.

Anyone who presents with these symptoms should immediately seek medical assistance. Doctors should then recognise these complaints as being typical of meningitis, and urgent tests carried out to confirm the suspected diagnosis. Once a diagnosis has been made, a patient must be started on antibiotics immediately. Speed is absolutely vital, as bacterial meningitis spreads at an extremely rapid rate, quickly causing a patient’s condition to deteriorate.

Claiming compensation for bacterial meningitis

If there is a delay in treatment, a patient will soon become very ill. Bacterial meningitis can actually prove to be fatal within a matter of hours, or can cause permanent complications such as blindness, loss of limbs, deafness or brain damage.

Therefore time is of the essence when it comes to treating bacterial meningitis. Doctors must take note of a patient’s symptoms and appreciate that he or she may have a more minor condition such as flu, or may have a more life-threatening illness such as meningitis. Either way, tests must be carried out to ensure a correct diagnosis is made. It is vital that a patient is not misdiagnosed with flu (or another illness) and discharged from hospital, as the consequences will be devastating.

If medical professionals do make errors when managing bacterial meningitis and a patient suffers as a result, there may well be a case of medical negligence. This commonly occurs because doctors:-

  • Fail to carry out the necessary tests;
  • Make a misdiagnosis;
  • Fail to make a timely diagnosis;
  • Fail to provide emergency treatment.

Costs & How We Can Help You

We are always happy to speak to you early after the event to explore the circumstances of your potential medical negligence claim and to advise you of your options. We act for clients throughout England and Wales, if we cannot help you we will make no charge for our time. If we can help you to make a claim for compensation, you will benefit from the following funding options:

  • Conditional Fees ("no win, no fee")
  • Legal Expenses Insurance
  • Private Funding
  • Structured Payment Plans

Let Us Advise You Now

Early legal intervention can be vital so please contact us if you think you may have a claim. All initial enquiries are completely free of charge and without obligation.

Please call us free on 0800 234 3300 (or from a mobile 01761 490883) or complete our Online Enquiry Form.

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Testimonials

"Before we contacted you we had no real idea that we had grounds for a medical negligence claim but after speaking to you if became clear that Wendy was indeed treated poorly. Chris took the time to explain what was happening and kept us to speed. Our deepest gratitude to you all and Chris in particular."

"I would like to say a big thank you to you for making this whole process easy and relatively painless. You kept me informed throughout and you were always polite and courteous in all forms of communication. I would not hesitate to recommend you to friends and family, so a really big thank you and I wish you all the best in the future."

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