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How Do Incomplete and Complete Cauda Equina Syndrome Differ?

How Do Incomplete and Complete Cauda Equina Syndrome Differ?The long-term prognosis for these two versions of this appalling condition can be dramatically different. Patients who are left with complete cauda equina syndrome may find that they are entitled to make a claim for compensation.

A medical emergency?

The most significant difference between these two versions of cauda equina syndrome is that a patient with incomplete cauda equina syndrome is a medical emergency whereas a patient with complete cauda equina syndrome may only be regarded as an urgent case.

The reason behind this difference in approach is that a patient who has incomplete cauda equina syndrome still retains some neurological function and it is generally felt that, if surgery is undertaken promptly enough, the patient has a good chance of recovery of lost function. However, a patient who has complete cauda equina syndrome would seem to have a reduced chance of recovery of function.

Is it negligence?

Therefore, where medical professionals delay in their diagnosis and treatment of a patient with incomplete cauda equina syndrome, they may be considered to have acted negligently if that patient subsequently deteriorates and develops the complete condition before surgery is undertaken. This scenario can often lead to a successful compensation claim for the losses incurred as a result of this failing.

Symptoms of incomplete cauda equina syndrome

A patient presenting with the following symptoms may be suffering with incomplete cauda equina syndrome and probably requires an immediate MRI to confirm their diagnosis:

If a patient with these symptoms undergoes successful decompression surgery, there is a good chance that they will recover some of this lost function.

Failing the cauda equina patient

If a patient with the above symptoms receives a delayed diagnosis, their symptoms may deteriorate before surgery.

If this is the case, their surgery may be less successful and they may be left with the following on-going symptoms:

Talk to a solicitor

If you or a loved one are suffering the distressing and debilitating impact of cauda equina syndrome due to a delay in diagnosing this shocking condition, contact us today to discuss your situation with a specialist medical negligence solicitor.

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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