Unnecessary problems for patient during chemotherapy
A woman who suffered hyponatraemia when the sodium
in her blood dropped to a dangerously low level despite regular monitoring at
hospital has recovered a significant award of compensation with the assistance
of M R Law.
She was originally diagnosed as suffering from
multiple myeloma, being a form of blood cancer. She required chemotherapy;
however, she could only have that treatment if her sodium levels remained above
a certain threshold.
After undergoing a number of chemotherapy sessions,
the hospital was aware that her sodium level had dropped significantly yet they
failed to pass on the results from one department to another and they continued
with the treatment.
Within a short period, she became seriously
dehydrated and she began to suffer seizures. The woman was admitted to hospital
as an emergency patient where she spent over six weeks recovering from her
symptoms, despite which she was left with reduced mobility and other ongoing
problems due to the hyponatraemia.
The mistakes made by the hospital were entirely avoidable and there were severe ongoing consequences for our client.
Robert Barker, head of the Medical Negligence team at M R Law who
dealt with the case comments:
“This was a difficult claim for our client to bring. She
recognised that she needed chemotherapy and she was extremely grateful for the
treatment provided. However, the mistakes made by the hospital were entirely
avoidable and there were severe ongoing consequences for our client.
The hospital was aware her sodium levels had dropped well below
the threshold at which they should have suspended her treatment. At that point,
it was a reasonably straightforward procedure to inform our client and to take
steps to increase her sodium levels before resuming the chemotherapy.
Instead, they failed to notify our client and continued with her
treatment as a result of which she suffered severe consequences including
possible brain damage. Those consequences will continue to affect her and they
have led to her requiring additional care and assistance.
I am pleased we were able to achieve an excellent outcome for our client in these difficult circumstances as the hospital accepted there were avoidable errors.”
If you have suffered complications arising
during hospital treatment, please contact our specialist medical negligence
team to speak directly to a qualified and experienced lawyer.