Clinical negligence case involving a total laryngectomy cancer patient, with delayed diagnosis and treatment of an infection which onset non negligently, post-surgery. This resulted in extensive tissue necrosis and two further operations, the second a “pec-major”, to repair the significant damage.
The outcome post-surgery was compromised in terms of function – lost power of speech and the ability to feed conventionally.
The case was complex and was defended throughout. The damage/injury caused resulted from more than one cause – the non-negligent onset of infection and the negligent failure to diagnose and treat,apportionment / attribution between the two factors,impossible.
The Claimant argued for departure form “but for” in favour of the alternative approach to causation – “material contribution” per Bailey v MOD, Hotson v East Berkshire and Telles v South West.
The case eventually settled just pre-trial, sadly by that time the Claimant already deceased.