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Misdiagnosis of Cauda Equina Syndrome

Cauda Equina Syndrome has a low incidence rate with a disproportionately high medico-legal profile. This is because the condition is commonly misdiagnosed, something which can lead to devastating consequences for the individual concerned.

If you have suffered because your Cauda Equina Syndrome was misdiagnosed, you need to seek expert legal advice as soon as possible, as you could be entitled to a substantial sum of compensation for the terrible injuries you have sustained.

Common misdiagnoses of Cauda Equina Syndrome

Cauda Equina Syndrome is often misdiagnosed for two reasons. Firstly, it is a rare condition that many medical professionals will not have seen before. Secondly, it has a number of symptoms that are very similar to other, less serious health complaints. These symptoms include:-

Upon initial presentation, a medical professional may mistake these symptoms for another condition. Common misdiagnoses include a urinary tract infection (because of the urinary disturbances) and generalised lower back pain of an undetermined origin. Female patients may also be suspected of having gynaecological problems.

Avoiding a misdiagnosis of Cauda Equina Syndrome

Nevertheless, as with all medical conditions, a diagnosis should be confirmed using the appropriate tests. For example, if a urinary tract infection is suspected, a urine sample should be analysed. Or if lower back pain is present, anal tone and perineal sensation should be assessed to check whether there are underlying neurological complications.

If these tests do not verify the putative diagnosis, medical professionals must quickly appreciate that a different condition is at play – including the possibility of Cauda Equina Syndrome. Further tests should then be performed at a matter of urgency. An MRI scan will prove particularly useful when establishing whether or not the spine is compressed, and if so what the underlying cause might be. Once a firm diagnosis is made, emergency decompression surgery can be carried out.

However, unfortunately some medical professionals fail to ensure they have made the correct diagnosis. Instead a patient is sent away with the wrong form of treatment, and only when it proves ineffective are further tests carried out. But by then it will probably be too late. Indeed, Cauda Equina Syndrome requires immediate treatment if a patient is to make a recovery. The delay caused by a misdiagnosis could therefore result in permanent injuries.

Contact us to talk about Cauda Equina compensation

If you have suffered long-term complications because doctors misdiagnosed your Cauda Equina Syndrome, you could be entitled to compensation. To find out more, 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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