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Bowel Incontinence and Cauda Equina Negligence

Bowel Incontinence and Cauda Equina Negligence

A patient who is left with complete cauda equina syndrome may face the misery of a lifetime with bowel incontinence. If this horrific scenario is due to medical delays in either diagnosis or treatment, it make be appropriate to make a claim for compensation.

Cauda equina function

The ability to control ones bowels and to be able to prevent the unintended passing of wind and faeces is partly dependent on the effective functioning of the cauda equina nerves. These nerves, at the base of the spine, pass messages of sensation and function between the lower body and the brain, thus facilitating the monitoring and function of the bowel.

If the nerves become compressed due to a prolapsed disc, they cannot function properly and bowel function can become compromised. If the compression is promptly resolved, the patient may recover function. If decompression is delayed, however, bowel function may be lost forever.

The effects of cauda equina compression

The impact of lost bowel function can be significant on many aspects of a person's life:

  • Their social confidence may be lost and they may become increasingly isolated and depressed as a result
  • Their ability and willingness to travel may be restricted
  • Their ability to work may be limited or, in some cases, lost altogether.

The financial implications of cauda equina syndrome are considerable. Where an individual is no longer able to work, or restricted in the nature of their employment, their income may fall dramatically.

In fact, bowel incontinence is probably only one of several physical problems being experienced by a person with complete cauda equina syndrome. Typical effects also include loss of bladder sensation and control, loss of sexual function and loss of mobility. For many people suffering from this appalling condition, leaving the home is difficult and returning to work is all but impossible.

A successful compensation claim can help to deal with many of the problems associated with this extremely unpleasant and provide recompense for lost earnings.

Medical negligence

Early diagnosis and emergency treatment can be crucial to a positive outcome from cauda equina syndrome.

If medical professionals caused a delay in diagnosis or treatment, leaving the patient with on-going and debilitating symptoms which could have been avoided with more timely intervention, they may be regarded as having acted negligently.

Speak to a solicitor

Contact Glynns Solicitors, specialists in medical negligence, if you or a loved one have been the victim of substandard care of cauda euqina syndrome.

We have supported many clients in making highly-successful compensation claims relating to this hideous condition and will be very happy to help you.

Please call us on 0800 234 3300 (or from a mobile 01275 334030) or complete our Online Enquiry Form.

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"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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