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Cauda Equina Syndrome Disability

If you have become disabled as a result of cauda equina syndrome, you could be entitled to pursue a claim for compensation. Although this will not undo the damage that has been done to your life, it will at least provide you with ongoing financial support, and may even help you achieve a sense of justice.

Disability after cauda equina syndrome

At the bottom of the spinal cord there is a bundle of nerves called the cauda equina nerves, so called because they resemble a horse’s tail. These enable sensation in the perineum, buttocks and genitalia, and enable function of the legs, rectum and pelvic organs.

The cauda equina nerves are very sensitive, so if they are compressed for any reason (for example, a slipped disc), they will quickly suffer harm. Consequently sensation and function in the legs, bladder, bowel, buttocks, anus and genitalia will be reduced.

If the nerves are quickly decompressed when these problems first appear, it is very likely they will recover. However, medical professionals often mistake the symptoms of cauda equina syndrome for another, more minor condition – usually generalised lower back pain or a urinary tract infection.

If the condition is not immediately diagnosed, the nerves will continue to be compressed, creating more and more damage. Within a short space of time, the injury will be so extensive that the nerve cells die, after which they cannot regenerate. When this happens, the nerves cannot be repaired, meaning a patient will have permanent neurological dysfunction.

The complications of cauda equina syndrome will differ from case to case, but for those who are subject to a delayed diagnosis, the consequences will be extremely serious. Many will not be able to walk without a walking aid, while some will be confined to a wheelchair.

In addition, there is usually urinary incontinence, necessitating the use of a catheter. Some will also have bowel dysfunction and will require a colostomy bag. Sexual dysfunction is also a common side effect of cauda equina syndrome, with men being unable to achieve an erection.

Claiming compensation for your cauda equina disability

If you have suffered any of the complications described above because doctors did not make a timely diagnosis, or did not provide emergency treatment, you need to talk to a solicitor. This is because it is very likely that your injuries were caused by medical error and could have been avoided with better care. You will therefore be entitled to compensation for the terrible suffering this has caused you. To find out more, contact us today.

Please call us free on 0800 234 3300, from a mobile click to call 01275 334030 or complete our Free Online Enquiry for a no cost, no obligation opinion.

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