Cauda Equina Claims Solicitors

Doctors and medical professionals have strict duties to uphold a reasonable standard of patient care from initial diagnosis, to referral, to treatment. Unfortunately, sometimes this reasonable standard of care falls short and doctors fail to diagnose a condition or take too long in diagnosing the patient or referring the patient for treatment.

Cauda equina syndrome is a serious medical condition caused by nerve compression in the lower spine. Unless treated within 24-48 hours of the onset of symptoms, it can lead to permanent paralysis and incontinence.

For many medical conditions, a slight delay will not make a significant difference in the prognosis or final outcome of treatment. However, for cauda equina syndrome, early diagnosis is crucial to prevent permanent injury being caused.

If you’ve suffered an injury as a result of cauda equina syndrome because a doctor or medical professional failed to diagnose you or refer you for treatment, delayed your diagnosis, or committed an act or omission which caused or contributed to the condition (such as surgery), our highly experienced cauda equina claims solicitors are on hand to help you claim medical negligence compensation.

At JCP Solicitors, we have specialist knowledge regarding claims for cauda equina syndrome. We offer practical, sympathetic advice about the merits of your case and will handle every aspect of your medical negligence compensation claim on your behalf. From the initial application, to sourcing any scans or medical records, to negotiating settlement, to representing you at any hearings, we will be by your side every step of the way.

Wherever possible, we will use our expert negotiation skills to help you settle the matter amicably out of court, avoiding the potentially distressing process of going through a trial. However, if it becomes necessary to go to court in order to fight for your compensation, we will use all our knowledge and experience to robustly present your position, giving you the best possible chances of the court deciding in your favour.

We support local people across the whole of South, East, and West Wales including Swansea, Cardiff, Carmarthenshire, The Vale of Glamorgan, Pembrokeshire, and Rhondda Cynon Taff.

Get in touch with our cauda equina claims solicitors today by calling your local branch, emailing law@jcpsolicitors.co.uk, or by filling in the simple enquiry form to the right of the page.

 

  • Mei Li
      • Mei Li
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  • Matthew Owen
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What is cauda equina syndrome?          

Cauda equina refers to the nerves in the lower back (called cauda equina nerves or ‘horse’s tail’ nerves due to the way they fan out). These nerves contribute towards movement and function in the legs as well as control and sensation in the genital, anal, and bladder region.

Cauda equina syndrome occurs when the nerves become severely compressed. Usually this is caused when the lumbar discs, which sit in between the vertebrae of the spine, rupture or slip.

Other causes of cauda equina syndrome include spinal infections, fractures or inflammation, narrowing of the spinal canal (called stenosis), negligent surgery, injuries such as a car crash or fall and tumours.

What are the early symptoms of cauda equina syndrome?

The symptoms of cauda equina syndrome can come on suddenly or they can start gradually and get progressively worse. It is often difficult to spot as the symptoms can also be indicative of other conditions. The symptoms of cauda equina syndrome include:

  • Severe lower back pain
  • Loss or partial loss of sensation in the legs, feet, inner thighs, or buttocks which may get progressively worse (called saddle anesthesia)
  • Pain, weakness, or numbness in either or both legs
  • Difficulty getting up from a sitting position, stumbling when you walk, or other loss of motor function
  • Issues with bladder or bowel control and function, including difficulty going to the toilet or trouble holding it
  • Sudden sexual dysfunction

Why is cauda equina an emergency?

Cauda equina syndrome is a medical emergency because, if left untreated, the symptoms will usually continue to worsen until permanent paralysis or incontinence occurs.

It’s recommended that patients with cauda equina syndrome receive urgent surgery within 48 hours of the onset of symptoms to have the best possible chance of recovering lower body sensation and motor function.

How do I claim compensation for cauda equina medical negligence?

Cauda equina syndrome needs urgent medical investigation, diagnosis, and treatment to ensure permanent injury does not occur.

You can claim medical negligence compensation for cauda equina syndrome where you’ve suffered a related injury caused by and act or omission by a medical professional, including:

  • Where a medical professional has failed to diagnose you or diagnosed you too late
  • Where a medical professional failed to refer you to treatment in time
  • Where the cauda equina syndrome has been caused by inadequate or negligent medical treatment, such as during lumbar spine surgery

Our friendly and compassionate medical negligence solicitors will listen thoughtfully to the circumstances of your case and provide knowledgeable advice on your options and the merits of a potential medical negligence claim.

To start your medical compensation claim, get in touch with our expert cauda equina claim solicitors by contacting your local office. We can deal with every aspect of your claim on your behalf, from obtaining copies of your medical records and any scans, to preparing and submitting the application, to negotiating settlement and compensation.

How much compensation can I get for cauda equina syndrome?

Depending on the type and extent of your injuries, you could receive medical negligence compensation for things such as:

  • Pain and suffering caused by the negligence
  • Loss of earnings and future earning capacity
  • The costs of home help, childcare or care
  • The cost of transport to and from hospital or medical appointments
  • Adaptations to your home and any specialist equipment you need

The exact amount will depend on the individual circumstances of your case. For example, someone who’s received minor injuries from which they will recover will probably receive less compensation than someone who has permanent paralysis and needs long-term care.

What is the time limit to claim for cauda equina compensation?

The time limit for cauda equina claims is three years from the date of the injury, or from the date that you discovered your injury. This means you must start your medical compensation claim within three years. However, we strongly recommend starting your claim at the earliest opportunity to ensure that there is sufficient time to conduct a thorough investigation.

The exceptions are for if you are bringing a claim on behalf of:

  • A child: you have until the child turns 18 years old to start the claim, then the child has a further three years to submit the claim themselves.
  • An adult who lacks the mental capacity to start their own claim and the injury happened after they lost capacity: there are no time limits unless the person recovers capacity, in which case the three-year clock starts ticking.

How do No Win No Fee cauda equina claims work?

No Win No Fee claim agreements, often referred to as ‘Conditional Fee Agreements’, are a way to fund compensation claims without the risk of ending up out of pocket.

The way a No Win No Fee claim works is, we accept your case and do not charge you any legal fees for the time we spend working on it. If you win your case, we will seek to recover the costs of our work from the Defendant (the person or organisation you’re suing), with a percentage deducted from a limited part of any damages you are awarded. This percentage is a specific amount set by law and we will discuss how much this is likely to be at your initial appointment.

Unfortunately, if medical experts are required to provide evidence in your cauda equina syndrome case, they cannot work on a No Win No Fee basis as we do, as they must remain independent. You may also incur separate costs, for example to obtain medical records or to pay court fees, which need to be paid at once.

We understand that you may be worried about finances during this challenging time, particularly if you cannot work due to your injury. Therefore, we can offer you a funding facility to help cover any additional costs while your claim progresses.

At the end of the claim, if you are successful, it is likely the Defendant will pay these costs. In case your claim is unsuccessful, you will be covered by an insurance policy which protects you from any adverse risk.

Why choose JCP Solicitors for your cauda equina medical compensation claim?

At JCP Solicitors, we make our clients’ welfare and rights our absolute priority and, as one of Wales’ most trusted law firms, we strive to achieve excellence in every case, no matter the complexity.

When it comes to medical negligence, we understand that you may be feeling vulnerable and anxious or angry about what has happened. We seek to make your cauda equina compensation claim as straightforward and stress-free as possible and our flexible and generous No Win No Fee structure will ensure you don’t incur hefty legal costs as your claim progresses.

Our team is the largest specialist team in South West Wales and we are recognised as one of the leading medical negligence teams in Wales in both of the independent directories, The Legal 500 and Chambers.

We are recognised for our skills by the Law Society in the Clinical Negligence Accreditation which is only awarded to law firms with the highest standards of advice and representation in medical negligence claims.

We have received recognition from the Spinal Injuries Association, a charity which raises awareness and provides supports for people with spinal injuries, as a firm of solicitors with a proven track record for successfully assisting people claim compensation for spinal injuries.

We are also Law Society accredited in Lexcel for our exceptional client care and legal practice management, reflecting our dedication to putting client needs first and foremost in every action we take.

JCP Solicitors is independently regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA).

Get in touch with our medical negligence solicitors today

Our medical negligence team includes fluent Welsh speakers and JCP Solicitors has a dedicated Welsh language coordinator, meaning our services are fully accessible in both English and Welsh. We are happy to speak with you in person, over the phone, by email or using video messaging, making it as convenient as possible to get in touch.

Get in touch with our cauda equina claims solicitors today by calling your local branch, emailing law@jcpsolicitors.co.uk, or by filling in the simple enquiry form at the top of the page.