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Royal London Hospital pays damages to patient after operation fails

PUBLISHED: 07:55 03 June 2010 | UPDATED: 16:06 05 October 2010

EAST END health chiefs have been forced to pay out a six-figure settlement to a former patient who was confined to a wheelchair after a failed spinal operation. Gerald Morgan was left with deformed legs and hips and horrendous bruising after doctors

EAST END health chiefs have been forced to pay out a six-figure settlement to a former patient who was confined to a wheelchair after a failed spinal operation.

Gerald Morgan was left with deformed legs and hips and "horrendous" bruising after doctors at the Royal London Hospital failed to diagnose his fractures for seven months, according to his lawyers.

But after a five-year-battle, the 60-year-old was awarded around £100,000 in an out-of-court settlement from the hospital and his Birmingham GP.

"After a five-and-a-half-year battle I remain very angry at the treatment I received" Mr Morgan said. "I regard the settlement as clear acknowledgement of failings on the part of the hospital doctors and my GP.

"I hope they both learn lessons from what happened to me so that nobody else has to suffer as I have."

The former lorry driver who lives in Birmingham was treated at the hospital in Whitechapel in 2004 when he had a spinal stimulator inserted to help control the pain he was experiencing in his back and leg.

But when surgeons turned the stimulator on for the first time, Mr Morgan said he received a "huge electric shock" when his muscles contracted so much that he was thrown up from his wheelchair.

Mr Morgan added: "The machine was turned off and I was in extreme pain and shock.

"The next morning I had widespread bruising around my right side and groin area and I was in terrible pain.

"Despite this, I was sent home three days later with no further investigations by the hospital."

He received a visit from his GP Dr Yap who also failed to diagnose him.

And according to his solicitor Ally Taft at the law firm Irwin Mitchell, it was not until seven months after the operation that he was finally referred to a hospital for x-rays which diagnosed a fractured pelvis and fractures of both hips.

In a join statement, Barts and the London Trust which runs the Royal London and GP Dr Yap said: "After admitting a delay in diagnosing Mr Morgan's fractures in October 2009, negotiations were commenced and a settlement that was agreeable to all parties was confirmed.


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