Successful Clinical Negligence Claim For Scaphoid Fracture

James Braund, specialist clinical negligence lawyer at Trethowans LLP’s Dorset Offices, has recently concluded a claim arising due to sub-standard treatment by a hospital dealing with a scaphoid wrist fracture.

Mr A had injured his wrist whilst playing football in early 2018. It was immediately painful and when the pain continued over the weekend, he attended A&E. Unfortunately, the doctor failed to perform a full examination and, specifically, did not examine the scaphoid bone. As such, the doctor concluded the wrist was not broken and was only sprained. The doctor discharged Mr A without undertaking any x-rays.

Surgery was needed to correct the mistake

Around a month later, as the pain was continuing, Mr A attended a physiotherapist. The physiotherapist immediately referred him for an x-ray, which showed that Mr A had fractured his scaphoid. Due to the delay in immobilisation, the fracture did not unite and Mr A underwent surgery for metalwork to be inserted into his wrist to unite the fracture. The surgery went well. However, Mr A continued to experience some pain and restriction of movement within his wrist.

Mr A raised a letter of complaint with the hospital, which seemed to highlight some discrepancies but fell short of admitting any formal degree of fault. Shortly after the incident, Mr A was recommended to James by a local professional.

We swiftly obtained an admission of liability

James obtained Mr A’s full medical records and put the claim to the hospital. James was able to obtain a swift formal admission of liability from the hospital who admitted that a full examination should have been undertaken and that this would likely have led to the fracture being identified and treated more quickly.

James obtained a medical report from an independent orthopaedic hand surgeon. The expert hand surgeon considered that had there not been the delay in treatment it was likely that Mr A’s fracture would have united without the need for surgical intervention and with no residual symptoms. He suggested that Mr A undergo further imaging of the wrist which was arranged and undertaken. After review of the x-rays, the surgeon confirmed that Mr A required further surgery and that, following this future surgery, Mr A’s residual symptoms should improve considerably.

Large sum won for the client in settlement

This evidence was presented to the other side and negotiations ensued. A number of offers were made by both sides and James was able to settle the claim for Mr A for £20,000.00.

Mr A commented “I can’t praise James highly enough. From the moment he took my case on he quickly understood the details, provided accurate written summaries and made the legal process straightforward for me. He provided his recommendations at each stage of the process and ensured I was kept updated throughout. My questions or clarifications were always addressed in an extremely prompt and timely manner. James quickly earnt my trust and confidence and I would thoroughly recommend to anyone who finds themselves in a similar situation”.


If you’d like to discuss a similar case with one of our experienced clinical negligence lawyers, please don’t hesitate to contact Trethowans today on 0800 2800 421.