Failure to diagnose and treat an Arterial Occlusion resulting in a lower leg amputation – settled for £715,000

The Kingsley Napley Clinical Negligence team acted for a client who underwent a right leg amputation at a level below the knee, following the Defendant’s failure to diagnose and effectively treat an Arterial Occlusion.

After suffering several episodes of severe pain and cramping in the abdomen and leg, as well as discoloration and coldness of the limb, our client had numerous GP and hospital attendances with no improvement. An MRI scan was finally performed, indicating an embolus in the leg causing a restriction of the blood flow to the lower limb.

Treating physicians opted to pursue a conservative approach to treatment.  However, rather than administering this course of treatment at hospital and keeping our client in for observation, our client was discharged. Had our client been kept at hospital under review by the vascular surgery team there, observation in the following days would have indicated that our client’s condition was failing to respond to a conservative regime and required a dynamic intervention in order to remove the embolus.

Alternatively, had arrangements been put in place to have regular review by a vascular surgeon following discharge, it would have been recognised that there was a continuing deterioration and that an invasive intervention was urgently required. This meant that effective treatment that would have restored the circulation in the leg and avoided the need for amputation did not occur.

The Defendant admitted full liability for the failure to treat an ischamic leg leading to a below knee amputation. The case settled out of court for £715,000. This sum included an award for our client’s pain and suffering, and past and ongoing losses, consisting of provisions for future care, and the cost of purchasing modified accommodation and aids and equipment including prosthetics.

If you, or a member of your family has experienced a similar situation and would like to know more about clinical negligence claims, please email

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