Delayed diagnosis of cancer

Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

This claim was brought on behalf of a male with a delayed diagnosis of cancer of the rectum.

The case involved allegations that there were several missed opportunities to diagnose the disease.

Our client required radical surgery, which would not have been needed with earlier diagnosis but had made a good recovery from surgery and was cancer free by the time of settlement.

An interesting feature of the case was that in relation to the earliest allegations of negligence, our colorectal evidence was that the tumour would have been of such a size and in such a location that it could have been removed by trans-anal local excision, which would have avoided the radical resection which our client had to undergo.

There are only a small number of specialist centres that offer this procedure but our evidence was that our client should have been offered a referral and his evidence was that had it been offered, he would have accepted

Although the claim was defended initially, shortly after exchange of witness statements the Defendant made an offer of settlement and although this was rejected it triggered negotiations and the claim settled at £160,000.00. This might appear to be a low award bearing in mind the circumstances of the case, however our client had not worked for several years before the delayed diagnosis and therefore there was no claim for loss of earnings.