If you required knee replacement surgery, you probably had high hopes that surgery would improve your quality of life. For many, a knee replacement does just that but if things go wrong, a botched knee replacement can cause even more problems. In this guide, we’ll explain how much compensation for botched knee replacement surgery could be awarded for the suffering caused, and how the process of claiming compensation works.
You’re not alone if you do decide to start a claim. We’re here to help and a claims advisor will be happy to review your claim for free. You’re under no obligation to proceed with a claim, but if you’d like us to, we could connect you with a medical negligence solicitor on our team if it appears viable. If you proceed, they’ll manage it on a No Win No Fee basis meaning you won’t pay any legal fees unless compensation is awarded.
To learn more about botched knee replacement compensation claims, read on. Alternatively, call us on 0800 6524 881 right away to speak with a specialist.
Table of contents
- What Is Knee Replacement Surgery?
- Can I Claim Compensation For Botched Knee Replacement Surgery?
- What Types Of Medical Negligence Could Lead To A Claim?
- What Complications Can Arise For Knee Replacement Surgery?
- How Much Compensation For Knee Replacement Surgery Gone Wrong?
- Time Limits For Medical Negligence Claims
- Evidence To Support A Botched Knee Replacement Surgery Claim
- Starting The Knee Replacement Surgery Negligence Claims Process
Where parts of the knee joint are worn out or injured, knee replacement surgery may be required. Some of the main reasons for surgery are osteoarthritis, gout and knee injuries. The idea of this procedure is to reduce pain when the knee is used and to make the joint more efficient.
During knee replacement surgery, damaged cartilage and bone is removed and replaced with plastic and metal parts. Surgery can be offered for a partial or complete knee replacement.
Knee replacement surgery can be offered by the NHS or private hospitals. One of our specialist solicitors could help you to claim against whoever caused you to suffer after negligent surgery.
To be eligible to claim compensation for knee replacement surgery gone wrong, you will typically need to prove:
- Negligence: Where a medical professional (surgeon, consultant, doctor etc) provided a substandard level of care (when compared to a suitably qualified medical professional); and
- Causation: Where your suffering following your knee replacement can be directly linked to the medical professional’s negligence.
Based on the above, if you’re suffering following knee replacement surgery but your surgeon acted completely appropriately, it wouldn’t be possible to claim compensation. However, if your surgeon made a mistake and botched the procedure, a solicitor on our team could help you to claim compensation for any subsequent suffering.
Some examples of negligence that might mean you’re eligible to claim compensation following knee replacement surgery include:
- If alternative options were not considered with you before surgery.
- Where the potential risks of knee replacement surgery were not explained.
- If surgical errors were made i.e. where the prosthetic knee parts were fitted incorrectly.
- If a misdiagnosis meant you had a knee replacement that wasn’t required.
- Where faulty, damaged or poorly built knee replacement parts were used.
- If you suffered a hospital infection or other illnesses following poor post-operative care.
These are just a few examples. If you do have any questions or would like to talk to us about making a claim, please feel free to get in touch today.
While many knee replacements are successful and can last for 20 or more years, there are some risks associated with surgery including:
- Nerve or tissue damage – including damaged ligaments and blood vessels.
- Infections – if not treated quickly, this can result in the need for further surgery.
- Blood clots – Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) can result in blood clots travelling from the leg to the lungs. This can result in life-threatening or a fatal condition called a pulmonary embolism.
- Issues with the new knee joint – these might include increased stiffness and pain, difficulty putting weight on the new knee and difficulty bending the knee.
- Fractures or bone damage – In rare cases, the bone around the knee joint can be damaged or fractured during the surgery. Additional procedures may be necessary to repair the fracture or reinforce the bone.
If you’ve suffered because of a botched knee replacement, please call our team today. We’ll review your claim for free and explain if you could be entitled to compensation for the suffering caused.
The amount of compensation you could receive for botched knee replacement surgery will depend on the specific circumstances of your case. Therefore, your solicitor will ask an independent medical expert to look at the impact of the botched surgery. This will involve meeting the specialist so that they can examine your knee replacement and talk with you about how you’re currently suffering. They will produce a report which will be sent to your solicitor to explain your prognosis.
After the physical symptoms have been assessed, your solicitor will consider any other types of suffering that can be linked to your knee replacement surgery. These could include:
- Emotional distress, depression and other forms of psychological injuries.
- Lost income.
- Private hospital treatment to remedy your problems.
- The time somebody else has spent caring for you.
- Travel expenses.
- Mobility aids.
- Future loss of earnings.
- Loss of amenity if the botched knee replacement means you can’t participate fully in your normal activities.
- The cost of installing handrails or modifying your home in other ways to make it more accessible while your injuries are still affecting you.
Importantly, your solicitor will think about any future suffering you’ll endure because you’ll only be able to claim once.
If you do decide to claim for suffering caused by your knee replacement surgery, you’ll need to abide by the relevant time limits for medical negligence claims. In most cases, this is a 3-year limitation period. It will generally either start on the date of your knee replacement surgery or the date of knowledge (i.e. when you realised the surgery had gone wrong).
An exception to the 3-year rule is if a vulnerable or elderly claimant lacks the mental capacity to make a claim themselves. In this situation, there is no time limit for making a claim all the while they’re incapacitated, however, a friend or relative acting as a litigation friend could claim compensation on the claimant’s behalf at any point.
It can be highly beneficial to begin the claims process early. That’s because, in cases where liability is accepted early but more time is needed to fully understand how you’ll suffer in the future, your solicitor could request interim payments to help you with any immediate problems. This could help you to pay for a carer, receive private remedial treatment or cover your lost income while you’re injured.
Your solicitor will use evidence to try and prove the extent of your suffering from the knee replacement procedure and who caused it in an effort to secure maximum compensation for your suffering. The types of evidence they might use include:
- Copies of your medical records. These can include records about your surgery. Medical notes from before and after surgery will also be requested for review by an independent medical specialist.
- Financial records. Receipts, bank statements and other records may be required to help claim back costs linked to your knee surgery complications.
- Witness statements. Friends and family might be asked to explain how you’ve suffered since your knee replacement was carried out.
- A personal diary. You could help to explain the problems caused by your knee replacement surgery by diarising the dates you couldn’t work or missed on other activities. You could also record each time you needed to visit your doctor for further treatment.
In the vast majority of cases handled by medical negligence solicitors, court action is not required. Generally, your legal team and the hospital’s lawyers will try to settle the claim out of court by reaching an amicable agreement.
However, if this can’t be achieved, the last resort would be to ask a court to intervene.
If you have suffered from knee replacement surgery gone wrong and you’d like to find out more about your options for claiming compensation, please don’t hesitate to call us on 0800 6524 881 today.
Whether you decide to take action or not, we’ll review your claim for free and offer free advice on the options available to you. If you do decide to claim and a medical negligence solicitor from our team is able to help, they’ll manage the claim from start to finish on a No Win No Fee basis.
For further information on how much compensation for botched knee replacement surgery you could claim, please feel free to connect to our live chat service.