Case study: fatal failure to diagnose brain tumour
Fifty-four-year-old David died of a brain tumour after doctors failed to interpret an MRI scan correctly and missed vital signs. His widow Barbara contacted the team at Hospital Negligence for advice and her case was taken on by Nick Young, one of our specialist solicitors who secured her £20,000 in compensation.
Seizure misdiagnosed at the hospital
David had previously suffered from prostate cancer but this was successfully treated and he made a full recovery.
However a year later David suffered a seizure while he was on a train. He lost consciousness and fell forwards, hitting his head on a metal bar. David was taken to hospital and doctors thought he had suffered a potential vasovagal episode (where the blood supply to the brain is momentarily cut off) but that is was unlikely to be anything severe. David was discharged and told to see his GP if it happened again or he suffered any new symptoms.
Discharged again after further seizures
Whilst at work a couple of weeks later David suffered a fit. The episode lasted for 10 minutes and it took about half an hour to return to normal. David was taken to hospital where he underwent a CT scan. The results were normal and he was discharged with instructions to attend his GP for a referral for a neurological assessment and an MRI scan.
The next month David suffered a further seizure and was taken to the same hospital. He was again discharged and told that he would need to have an MRI scan of his head and brain and a referral to the hospital’s neurology department.
MRI scan misinterpreted
A couple of days after his seizure David underwent an MRI brain scan. The consultant who checked this reported it as normal and David was later diagnosed with epilepsy. David was put on medication which seemed to control the seizures and his condition stabilised for several months.
However approximately nine months after the MRI scan Barbara began to notice that she was having trouble communicating with her husband and he was becoming more forgetful. David went to see his GP who referred him for an urgent appointment with a hospital neurologist.
Brain tumour diagnosed
A further MRI scan was done of David’s brain which showed what appeared to be a large brain tumour and further investigations were undertaken which confirmed the cancer. After reviewing the previous MRI scan doctors realised that there were in fact signs of the tumour present which had not been identified. Precious time had been wasted in getting David the treatment her urgently needed.
By this time it was identified the tumour was not curable however a course of radiotherapy and chemotherapy was arranged to try to give David as much time as possible. Eight months later David sadly passed away.
We can help you claim
If you have also unfortunately suffered a death in the family due to medical negligence, contact the sympathetic team at Hospital Negligence today to find out if you can make a claim. Call us on 0800 014 7481, or fill in our contact form. Alternatively, read more about how we can help you.