Orthopaedic surgery or orthopaedics generally means anything to do with bones or connected tissues or more precisely, the musculoskeletal system, which is made up of:

  1. Bones
  2. Muscles
  3. Cartilage
  4. Ligaments
  5. Tendons
  6. Joints
  7. Soft tissue
  8. Nerves

An orthopaedic claim relates to a compensation claim made because of the negligence of a medical professional in treating or operating on an area of the musculoskeletal system.

Common procedures carried out by orthopaedic surgeons include:

  • Repairing damaged muscles, tendons and ligaments
  • Repairing fractured bones
  • Repairing cartilage
  • Replacing or resurfacing joints such as hip and knee joints
  • Correcting bone deformities

For the most part orthopaedic injuries are treated in a safe manner. However, in rare cases clinical negligence can occur and seriously affect the life of the patient.

Common Claims

We have helped clients claim for:

  • Misdiagnosis or late diagnosis
  • Missed fractures
  • Nerve damage
  • Damage to circulation
  • Errors in surgery
  • Serious wound infections
  • Inappropriate or substandard treatment of fractures
  • Inadequate cleaning, suturing and dressing of wounds
  • Failure to recognise the seriousness of a patient’s condition

There has been a huge rise in orthopaedic negligence claims over the past 20 years

It is estimated that Orthopaedic Practitioners are two or three times more likely to occur than claims brought against the average doctor. This is due in part to a steady rise in complicated trauma cases and an increase in complex surgery, such as joint replacement. It may also be attributed to the fact that a missed or late diagnosis can be evident for years after the fact and often become apparent on an unrelated diagnostic review.

Fortunately, healthcare in Ireland is generally of a very high standard. However, sometimes things can go wrong. If you have been harmed as a result of incompetence, lack of care or poor judgement, you may be able to make a claim.

In our experience where one has been involved in a road traffic collision, an injury can be missed by the medical team which leads to delays in the healing process and can become a medical negligence claim. It is therefore always essential in such cases to have your medical records reviewed from a medical negligence perspective.

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