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Transferring a CES Patient to Another Hospital

If a hospital is unable to treat a patient with cauda equina syndrome, he/she must be transferred to another hospital without delay. A failure to act with the appropriate urgency will be considered unacceptable and could lead to a medical compensation claim.

For more information on claiming medical negligence compensation for cauda equina syndrome, please contact us today. Our clinical negligence lawyers specialise in cauda equina claims and will be able to advise you further.

Why might a hospital not treat cauda equina syndrome?

Cauda equina syndrome must be treated with emergency surgical decompression. However, not all hospitals will be able to manage the condition. This might be for a number of reasons:

Firstly, the hospital may not have an MRI scanner available 24 hours a day, if at all. An MRI scan is the only way to confirm cauda equina nerve compression. If the hospital does not have the resources available to make a quick diagnosis, the patient must be sent to a hospital that does have round-the-clock scanning facilities.

Secondly, the hospital may not have the ability to treat cauda equina syndrome due to the absence of a neurosurgical department. Alternatively the neurosurgical department may be overrun, with the surgical list full of other emergencies. If the hospital is unable to treat cauda equina syndrome with emergency surgery, the patient should be transferred to a hospital which can.

Transferring a patient

In both situations, the neurosurgical unit at the hospital must be telephoned in advance to ensure there is a bed for the patient, and to ensure the necessary diagnostic/surgical resources are available.

Sometimes the neurosurgical unit will not immediately respond to the request or will be unable to receive the patient. If so, further action should be taken without delay to make sure a patient has access to the treatment that is so desperately needed.

Indeed, the successful treatment of cauda equina syndrome is dependent upon swift surgical decompression. Without this, the patient will suffer permanent neurological damage. Therefore it is up to the hospital to transfer the patient as quickly as possible.

Failure to act urgently

If a hospital is unable to manage a patient’s cauda equina syndrome but urgent action is not taken to transfer the patient, there may be a case of medical negligence. This would entitle the patient to make a medical negligence compensation claim in reflection of the injuries wrongfully sustained.

For more information on claiming compensation, please get in touch with us today.

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