Undiagnosed throat cancer led to £500,000 compensation

Failing to diagnose a medical condition can often lead to serious complications. In failing to diagnose and treat throat cancer in a 59 year old woman, a consultant caused her to need a total laryngectomy which is complete removal of the voice box, meaning her ability to speak and her breathing suffered severe consequences.

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Case details

The diagnosis should have been made after she had been referred by her GP to the consultant, who carried out tests including an MRI scan but failed to spot what a competent consultant in their field would have.

The gap of four months in beginning treatment meant the difference between the illness being curable through chemoradiotherapy with a 60% chance of success and having to have the drastic and life-changing surgery.

The operation caused her to have her tonsil, surrounding throat area, much of her tongue and her voice box removed. She was unable to speak and very restricted in her ability to eat and drink, being unable to eat solid foods again.

As a result of using an expert legal team, she was able to get the compensation, that while it would not repair the damage that had been done, would provide for her future and compensate her for the pain and suffering she had to endure. She received £500,000 which included her earnings, expenses, care for past and future and the injuries themselves. With this, she was able to start rebuilding her life after her ordeal.

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Howard Willis, Personal injury solicitor

About the author

Howard qualified as a solicitor in 1984 and has specialised in personal injury for over 25 years. He is a member of the Association of Personal Injury Lawyers (APIL) and is a recognised Law Society Personal Injury Panel expert.

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