Compensation for Failure to Diagnose issues with Appendix that subsequently ruptured.

failureMs. X had extreme abdominal pain and attended her GP after 2 days who referred her to hospital for assessment. The GP in his referral letter indicated a belief that Ms. X was suffering with appendicitis.

When first seen at the hospital it was noted that she had abdominal pain with an uncertain cause.   An x-ray was taken which was viewed one hour after been taken but it was concluded by the Registrar that it was not indicative of Appendicitis.   After two and half hours in the hospital, Ms. X was in extreme pain.  An ultrasound was carried out but she was not advised that in the absence of a full bladder it could be difficult to get a clear image.   In the event, her appendix was not clear on the ultrasound.

Some 5 hours after being admitted she was reassured that it was highly unlikely that she had appendicitis given the results of the x-ray, ultra sound and blood tests.  She was discharged home on paracetamol.

Her condition disimproved at home and ultimately the appendix perforated.   She attended A&E at a different hospital where appendicitis was diagnosed.   A number of procedures and operations followed.

The case was settled by way of payment of a Six Figure Compensation figure.  It was accepted that the Registrar should have known that over half of appendicitis cases present a typical.  Additionally, had her C-reactive protein level been properly considered it would have indicated appendicitis.   It seems to have been accepted that diagnosis was rushed and that had Ms. X been kept overnight when she first attended at the hospital it was far more likely that a correct diagnosis would have been made.

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