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A & E Clinical Negligence in Cauda Equina Syndrome

A & E Clinical Negligence in Cauda Equina Syndrome

If you attend Accident & Emergency with the possible symptoms of cauda equina syndrome, it is crucial that medial professional take appropriate action.

Cauda equina syndrome symptoms

If you are developing cauda equina syndrome, you may be experiencing the following symptoms:

  • Lower back and leg pain (one or both legs)
  • Tingling and/or weakness in the legs
  • Alteration in bladder and urinary sensation
  • Tingling or loss of sensation in the saddle area
  • Alteration of bowel sensation
  • Alteration of sexual sensation

Checking for cauda equina symptoms

If the patient is experiencing lower back and leg symptoms, it is important that they are also checked for the presence of additional cauda equina syndrome such as those listed above.

It may be necessary for the medical professional to carry out tests such as a pin-prick test to check for loss of nerve sensation, or a digital rectal examination to check for anal tone. They may check the patient's ankle reflexes as these can also be affected by neurological or nerve damage.

A failure to carry out such checks may mean that more advanced signs of cauda equina syndrome are missed and the patient suffers as a result.

Warning of cauda equina symptoms

Where it is considered that the patient is not exhibiting symptoms of cauda equina syndrome, but may be in danger of developing it, it is, nonetheless, important that they are warned of the symptoms that they should look out for and the possible need to attend A & E as a matter of emergency should those symptoms start to develop.

These symptoms, such as those listed above, are called red flag symptoms and indicate a need for prompt action.

Referring for an MRI scan

If the patient is exhibiting symptoms related to loss of lower body sensation or control, it might be appropriate to refer the patient for an emergency MRI scan in order to clarify the cause of their symptoms. This can confirm or rule out the presence of compression of the cauda equina nerves.

A failure to do so in a patient experiencing symptoms such as alteration of urinary experience or alteration of sensation in the saddle area, may mean that the patient's symptoms then deteriorate before surgery can be undertaken and the outcome is significantly worse.

Speak to a solicitor

If you or a loved one are suffering with the impact of complete cauda equina syndrome due to a delay in diagnosing your symptoms, it may be appropriate to make a claim for compensation.

Contact us today to talk to a specialist medical negligence solicitor with expertise in cauda equina compensation claims.

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