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Is Treatment For Cauda Equina Syndrome Urgent?

Cauda Equina Syndrome is a medical emergency. This means that urgent treatment must be provided if a patient is to avoid serious, long-term complications. In this article we explore why urgent treatment is so vital, and the possible consequences if it is delayed.

Why is urgent treatment vital for Cauda Equina Syndrome?

At the bottom of the spinal cord sits a bundle of nerves called the ‘cauda equina’, so called because together they resemble a horse’s tail. They control the function of the anal sphincter and genitalia, and provide sensation to the legs and perineum.

If the lower section of the spine is compressed for any reason, these nerves will be subject to a degree of pressure. This may happen due to (amongst others) a slipped lumbar vertebra, a traumatic event such as a car accident, or a spinal tumour.

However, the cauda equina nerves are extremely delicate. Therefore any amount of compression will soon cause them to suffer damage. This means it is absolutely essential for pressure to be alleviated as soon as possible. The longer it continues, the more extensive the injury will be.

Within a very short space of time the level of harm will be so widespread that the nerves lose function. Sadly such as injury cannot be repaired, meaning the affected individual will be left with permanent neurological problems. Because the cauda equina nerves serve the pelvic region and legs, long-term complications are likely to include:-

Have you been affected by a delay?

Evidently these are extremely serious side-effects and medical professionals should do everything in their power to avoid such a devastating outcome. However, the only way to do this is to make a timely diagnosis, thereby ensuring emergency decompression treatment can be provided. Doctors must use their professional knowledge to recognise the symptoms of Cauda Equina Syndrome and order urgent tests to confirm a diagnosis.

If they fail to do this and a delay causes a patient to suffer additional injuries (that could otherwise have been avoided with prompt treatment) there will be a case of medical negligence. This means that medical professionals have failed to provide a reasonable level of medical care, in turn causing a patient to be harmed.

If you or your loved one has been affected by a delay in diagnosing and treating Cauda Equina Syndrome, you could be the victim of medical negligence. You will consequently be entitled to claim compensation for the damage you have wrongfully endured. To find out more, please contact us at the Cauda Equina Solicitors.

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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