If medical negligence has set you back, we'll help you move forward

Breast surgery, whether for augmentation, reduction, or reconstruction, can have profound impacts on a person's self-esteem and quality of life. However, when these procedures are compromised by medical negligence, the results can be physically and emotionally devastating.

If your life, or the life of a loved one, has been affected by a breast surgery injury, we can help. If your injuries were caused by the negligence of a doctor, nurse, midwife or other medical professional, you may be entitled to claim compensation.

You can make a No Win, No Fee compensation claim with the help and support of a specialist clinical negligence solicitor.

With 9% of medical negligence claims relating to cancer treatment, you are not alone

Around 102,000 breast operations are carried out by the NHS every year in England, 60% of which are for primary breast cancer treatment. (source: NHS England)

According to NHS Resolution statistics, over 9% of medical negligence claims related to cancer treatments (resolution.nhs.uk).

Around 55,000 women in the UK are diagnosed with breast cancer each year (source: cancerresearchuk.org). 10-year survival rates are high at 76%, and that rate is improving all the time thanks to better screening and treatment. However, avoidable errors are still made, in regard to diagnosis, treatment and surgery.

Any patient who feels that she has received substandard medical treatment may be eligible to make a clinical negligence claim against a GP, or private or NHS hospital.

If you decide to make a breast surgery negligence claim, your medical negligence solicitor will take you through every step of the claims process. Your solicitor will be with you until you win your claim and get the compensation you need to move forward.

If you are looking for information on breast screening, visit: breast screening (nhs.uk).

See also:

Clinical negligence claim

Am I entitled to make a breast cancer negligence claim?

If you received treatment from a medical professional that fell below the accepted standard of care, and you were harmed as a result, you can claim compensation for breast cancer negligence.

Find out online if you can claim with our injury claim calculator. Or you can call 0800 376 1001 to speak to a specialist advisor. Find out in minutes if you have a claim.

How long after breast cancer negligence do I have to claim compensation?

You usually have 3 years to make a breast cancer negligence claim. The timelimit starts from the date you discovered you were injured by negligent care (the date of knowledge).

How long do I have to start a claim?

If your injury is apparent immediately after medical treatment, you will have 3 years to start a claim.

It may be that the negligent procedure happened more than 3 years ago, but your injury was only diagnosed recently, within the last 3 years. If so, you may still be able to make a claim.

What if your injury was diagnosed months or years after treatment?

You may not be immediately aware of your injury. In some cases, months and even years can pass before symptoms appear.

The law allows you to make a medical negligence claim up to three years after the 'date of knowledge' (when you first learned of the injury).

It is recommended that you start a claim as soon as possible, as medical negligence cases can be complex. Starting your claim sooner will give your solicitor more time to gather medical evidence, assess the extent of your injury and to negotiate interim payments and your final compensation amount.

How much compensation can I claim for a breast cancer negligence?

The amount of money you could claim for your injury will depend on:

  • the seriousness of your injury, and
  • any financial losses or costs you have incurred.

At the start of your claim, your solicitor will consider the many ways your injuries have affected your life. Your solicitor will take these considerations into account to calculate the correct compensation award.

Breast cancer negligence compensation calculator

Get an accurate compensation estimate (including for multiple injuries), confirm your legal position, and check if you have a No Win, No Fee claim.

Updated April 2024 Compensation Calculator v3.04

General damages

General damages are awarded for pain, suffering and loss of amenity (PSLA).

Awards for general damages are set by the Judicial College (judiciary.uk) and published in their guidelines for personal injury awards.

How is compensation calculated if I have multiple injuries?

Special damages

Special damages is compensation awarded to cover any financial losses and expenses you incur as a result of your injury or negligent medical treatment. These damages aim to put you back in the financial position you would have been in, had your injury not occurred.

Special damages will also cover your medical treatment expenses, that might include corrective treatment and psychological support.

Read more:

A complete list of recoverable losses in a personal injury claim

Types of breast cancer negligence claims

Doctor discharging patient

Breast cancer negligence claims typically fall into one of two categories:

Misdiagnosis

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has published breast screening guidelines for the assessment of suspicious lumps.

Generally, the following cases should be referred urgently to a specialist for investigation:

  • Where one or more hard, discrete and immovable lumps are identified
  • Patients over the age of 30 with a discrete lump that presents after menopause or persists throughout the menstrual cycle
  • Patients under the age of 30 with a family history of cancer or a lump that exhibits certain cancer-indicative features
  • Patients with eczema on one breast, nipple discharge or other changes to the nipple.

Other breast cancer risk factors include age (women over 50 have a higher risk of developing breast cancer), certain hormonal conditions radiation exposure. GPs are expected to assess the patient's full medical history before making a professional decision about whether to refer the patient for further tests.

Failure to follow NICE guidelines or exercise the appropriate degree of professional skill can indicate a breach of duty on the part of the GP.

Surgical error

Breast cancer surgical error occurs whenever a specialist fails to diagnose, classify, assess or treat breast cancer with the appropriate degree of skill.

Examples of clinical negligence include:

  • Failing to conduct the necessary investigative tests such as mammograms, ultrasound scans and biopsies
  • Mistakes in interpreting scans and pathology samples
  • Failing to remove all the cancerous cells during surgery, leaving a higher-than-average risk of the cancer recurring
  • Negligently administering chemotherapy drugs
  • Recommending one type of surgery when another type of surgery would produce a better outcome for the patient.

This list is not exhaustive. Any intervention that falls short of expected standards may lay the foundation for a compensation claim.

How do I know if I have a claim?

To determine whether you have a valid claim, your solicitor will consider two key factors: whether the medical professional's care was below the expected standard (negligence) and whether this directly caused illness or injury (causation).

While all surgeries involve some risk, not all unsuccessful outcomes are grounds for compensation. For instance, compensation may not be awarded if delayed diagnosis didn't worsen the cancer's stage or affect treatment and recovery.

However, if negligence significantly worsened your condition, the likelihood of a successful claim increases. An experienced clinical negligence solicitor can assess the specifics of your case to advise on the potential for a claim, helping you understand your options and how to move forward.

Clinical negligence claims

Breast cancer negligence injuries are usually categorised as clinical negligence. Click on the icon below for more information.

No win, no fee breast cancer negligence compensation claims

With no win, no fee, you can claim breast cancer negligence compensation without financial risk. If your claim isn't successful, you pay nothing. If you win, you only pay a pre-agreed percentage of your compensation.

Find out more about how no win, no fee claims work

How we can help you with your medical negligence claim

Your solicitor will fight for the best possible compensation settlement for you, and the highly-experienced panel of solicitors have an excellent track record of winning medical negligence claims.

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If you have any questions, or would like to start a No Win No Fee medical negligence claim, we are open:

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The Good Solicitor Guide

Case study

£100,000 award for delays in hospital treatment

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Citations

Source: (reviewed: 13/12/2023)

Chris Salmon, Director

Author:
Chris Salmon, Director