Could I Make A Medical Negligence Claim For Paralysis After Surgery?

Have you experienced paralysis after surgery and want to know if you could make a medical negligence compensation claim? Within this guide, we explore the eligibility criteria for making a medical negligence claim if you have suffered a paralysis injury while in surgery.

As well as including a section on claim eligibility, we’ve also provided information on possible causes of paralysis after surgery, how to support a medical negligence claim with evidence, and how compensation in instances such as these is calculated.


Expert Advice On Medical Negligence Claims For Paralysis After Surgery

You can also read about the advantages of having one of our No Win No Fee solicitors help you with your claim. Read on for more information and get in touch at any time of the day or night with any questions that you may have.

Select A Section

  1. Could I Make A Medical Negligence Claim For Paralysis After Surgery?
  2. What Causes Paralysis After Surgery?
  3. Proof Of Paralysis Caused By Surgical Negligence
  4. What Could You Claim For Paralysis After Surgery?
  5. Claim For Paralysis Due To Medical Negligence On A No Win No Fee Basis
  6. Related Medical Negligence Claim Guides

Could I Make A Medical Negligence Claim For Paralysis After Surgery?

There are certain criteria that a surgical negligence claim must meet. If your claim doesn’t meet these criteria, then you will not be able to seek compensation. You’ll find the criteria for making a medical negligence claim for paralysis after surgery in the list below.

  • Your surgeon’s duty of care –  Your surgeon must perform any operation in a competent manner with a sufficient level of skill. However, this duty is not restricted only to the procedure itself. For instance, a surgeon must tell you about any potential risks involved before you undergo a procedure. This is so you can make an informed decision as to whether you want the operation to take place at all. The Royal College of Surgeons of England has a Professional Code of Conduct that surgeons should follow.
  • Breach of duty – The surgeon provides a service that is not of reasonable skill and care.
  • Harm caused – A surgeon breaching their duty of care is not sufficient grounds to make a claim. The breach needs to have caused you harm that could have been avoided.

The basis for surgical negligence claims is comprised of the criteria listed above.

Medical Negligence Claim Time Limits

Generally speaking, you have 3-years to begin the process of making a medical negligence claim for paralysis after surgery. This time limit can be found in The Limitation Act 1980. It’s important to be aware of this limitation period as, if it expires, you may no longer be allowed to pursue the claim.

However, the same Act does make exceptions for those in certain categories. To find out more, get in touch with our advisors today.

What Causes Paralysis After Surgery?

There is no singular cause of paralysis after surgery. It could occur as a result of various scenarios. In this section, we’ve provided a few examples to provide context.

  • Severed Nerve – When a surgeon is operating on the back they could accidentally damage or cut a nerve in an operation gone wrong.
  • Never Event – A neurosurgeon operates on the wrong part of the brain, and this leads to the patient suffering a stroke and losing the ability to move the left side of the body.
  • Errors with anaesthetic – For example, when administered via the spine in an incorrect manner.
  • Unnecessary surgery – Due to the risks not being explained fully and no alternative treatments discussed you could have an operation that led to paralysis when alternative treatments were available.

This list is not exhaustive. There are other examples too. Get In touch to find out more.

Common Types Of Paralysis

There is also more than one form of paralysis after surgery that could occur – Such as:

  • Monoplegia – This is when just one limb is affected.
  • Hemiplegia – When either the right or left side of the body is affected by paralysis.
  • Paraplegia – Both legs are affected.
  • Quadriplegia – Paralysis of all four limbs.
  • Facial paralysis – Either partial or full. 

Reach out if you’d like more information.

Proof Of Paralysis Caused By Surgical Negligence

When making a claim for paralysis after surgery, you need to be able to present evidence. We’ve provided some examples below of evidence you could acquire to support your claim.

  • Hospital discharge letter – This will contain key information regarding your treatment and medical conditions. Dates should also be featured.
  • Your medical records Medical records can detail all the treatments you have had and any resulting injury.
  • A written account – Keep your own account of what happened.
  • The Bolam Test The Bolam test seeks advice from appropriately trained professionals in the same field and asks if the correct standard of care was applied. This is to determine whether the service provided was of the correct level. It will be determined on a case-by-case basis if the Bolam test is needed. This will be arranged for you.

If you’ve experienced paralysis after surgery, you may also be invited to attend an independent medical assessment.

A medical professional unaffiliated with the original incident will assess the harm caused and its impact on your life. The report that’s generated from this can assist legal professionals when they are valuing your claim.

Our solicitors could assist you during the process of gathering evidence. Get in touch for more information and for more examples of evidence that could assist you in supporting your claim.

What Could You Claim For Paralysis After Surgery?

The amount of compensation that is awarded for a medical negligence claim for paralysis after surgery is calculated on a case-by-case basis. All claims are unique, and each individual will have their own set of circumstances. A successful medical negligence claim settlement will be made up of 2 Heads of Loss.

The first Head of Loss is general damages and compensates for the pain and suffering caused by the medical negligence. When legal professionals are arriving at a suitable figure, they will often turn to helpful resources to assist them in their calculations. One of these is a publication called the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG).

Below, we’ve included some guideline compensation brackets taken from the JCG, which was last updated in 2022. Use them only as a guide.

Injury Description Guideline Compensation Bracket
Multiple serious injuries plus special damages Claimant suffers multiple injuries that cause very severe disability, can no longer work again and needs 24 hour care. Up To £1,000,000 plus
Quadriplegia Also known as tetraplegia. At the top end of this bracket, the person will be in physical pain. Or where senses and the ability to communicate will be significantly affected. £324,600 to £403,990
Paraplegia Within this bracket, factors such as physical pain, mentl health, age, life expectancy, and the impact on sexual function are all considered. £219,070 to £284,260
Back Severe (i) – This bracket addresses especially serious back injuries. The result will cause severe pain and combined with incomplete paralysis. Bladder and bowel functions may also be impacted. £91,090 to £160,980
Back Severe (ii) – Nerve root damage with associated loss of sensation, impaired mobility, impaired bladder and bowel function. £74,160 to £88,430
Leg Less serious leg injuries (i) – Nerve damage in lower limbs. £17,960 to £27,760
Thumb Serious Injury to the Thumb – Nerve damage. £12,590 to £16,760

Special Damages For Claims Involving Paralysis After Surgery

If the medical negligence has affected you financially you may be able to claim for special damages. Here are a few examples of the losses and expenditures that you could be reimbursed for via a special damages payment:

  • Medical expenses.
  • Walking aids.
  • Wheelchair
  • Care at home.
  • Full-time nursing care
  • Loss of earnings/future loss of earnings.
  • Travel costs.

You’ll need evidence to support this area of your claim. Keep hold of payslips, receipts, or any other documentation that could come in useful.

Claim For Paralysis Due To Medical Negligence On A No Win No Fee Basis

There are various ways working with one of our No Win No Fee solicitors could help you when you make a claim. For example:

  • Gathering evidence.
  • Beginning the claims process within the limitation period.
  • Valuing your claim.
  • Explaining legal jargon.

All of our solicitors also work under a form of No Win No Fee arrangement. It’s called a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA). This means you can access their legal services without paying them anything upfront. If your claim is successful, then a No Win No Fee solicitor takes a percentage (that’s capped, by law) from your compensation. This is known as a success fee. It’s not taken from you if your claim fails.

Talk To Our Team

If you have any questions, get in touch with our advisors. Once they know more about your case, they’ll not only be able to provide you with tailored advice, but also with a bespoke estimate of how much you could be owed.

They could even connect you with one of our No Win No Fee solicitors to help you begin the process of claiming for paralysis after surgery caused by medical negligence.

Related Medical Negligence Claim Guides

Hopefully, you now have a better understanding of whether you could make a claim for paralysis after surgery. Follow the links below for additional resources that you may find of use.

More of our guides: 

Information from other sources: