Delayed diagnosis of knee fracture

Davies and Partners settled a claim arising out of delayed diagnosis of a left knee fracture.

Mr B was involved in a motorbike accident and was unable to weight bear on his left leg. His leg swelled up and was very painful.

As the pain and swelling did not settle Mr B attended A&E. He complained of pain and his left knee was noted to be more swollen than the right. However, appropriate investigations and a thorough examination were not undertaken, and he was therefore discharged from the department, advised to continue to weight bear and take pain relief.

In view of ongoing problems with his knee, Mr B sought a private opinion where imaging confirmed a substantial tibial plateau fracture, with quite significant depression of the central weight-bearing portion of the lateral tibial plateau. Mr B underwent open reduction and internal fixation of the delayed lateral tibial plateau fracture privately.

Davies and Partners were instructed by Mr B to investigate whether or not any breach of duty had occurred, and if so, whether we could establish causation, in that the delayed diagnosis had caused him injury.

Davies and Partners’ took the claim on. Having completed the pre-action stage, we issued and served proceedings, outlining the allegations of negligence and the financial losses suffered in consequence (a significant proportion of the claim was in respect of the private second opinion and treatment that Mr B underwent), and were able to successfully settle the claim shortly after receiving the Defence (denying full liability).

We recovered damages in the sum of £8,000, which paid for the full cost of Mr B’s private treatment and provided him with a sum in consideration of his pain and suffering caused by the negligent medical treatment received.

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