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Cauda Equina
Cauda Equina Surgery Negligence

Cauda Equina Surgery Negligence

The timing of surgery for compressed cauda equina nerves is absolutely crucial. A delay can leave the patient with permanent bowel and bladder incontinence.

Cauda equina syndrome surgery

If a patient has a diagnosis of incomplete cauda equina syndrome, surgery is likely to be considered a matter of emergency. By this is meant that the nerves at the base of the spine need to be decompressed in some way within a matter of hours rather than days. This is necessary to prevent the further compression of the nerves and the continued deterioration in the patient's symptoms.

A delay in undertaking surgery may mean that the patient deteriorates to complete cauda equina syndrome prior to the commencement of surgery and is thus vulnerable to a worse outcome than might otherwise have been the case.

Surgery delays

A delay in surgery may be due to two fundamental causes:

  • Diagnosis of the condition may have been delayed meaning that the patient had suffered a significant deterioration in symptoms even before they were diagnosed
  • Despite a diagnosis, a failure to understand the severity and urgency of the patient's situation may mean that there is a delay in initiating surgery. (If a patient receives a diagnosis late in the day, it is sometimes considered better to delay surgery until the following morning in order to access the most competent practitioner for the task. This may be regarded as acceptable.)
  • It is also occasionally the case that spinal surgery in fact causes or worsens an individual's nerve dysfunction and this may also be regarded as negligent.

Medical negligence

If a diagnosis delay is due to the failure by medical professionals to recognise, assess or act on the patient's possible symptoms of cauda equina syndrome, they may be considered to have provided substandard care.

Should the patient subsequently suffer long-term difficulties due to the negligent delay, it may be appropriate to make a claim for compensation.

Speak to a solicitor

If you or a loved one are suffering the long-term effects of cauda equine syndrome due to a delay in surgery, you may be experiencing bladder, bowel and mobility difficulties.

Contact Glynns solicitors today. We have supported numerous clients in winning highly-successful compensation claims and will be happy to discuss your situation with you.

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

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