Bladder catheters

Claiming Compensation For Bladder Injuries8th Feb 2021

by David Simpson on 8th Feb 2021

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Did Doctors Cause Or Misdiagnose Your Bladder Injury?

Bladder injuries are serious. They can have permanent life-changing consequences: your quality of life may never be the same again.

So it is vital these injuries are diagnosed promptly and treated correctly. If doctors or other clinicians misdiagnose (or cause) your injury then you can sue them for medical negligence. Claiming on a No Win No Fee basis means there’s no financial risk to you.

Have You Suffered A Bladder Injury? Book A Free Chat

How Much Could I Claim?

Our medical negligence solicitors helped a 17-year-old Hampshire student to claim £815,000 in compensation after an alleged error at a hospital caused permanent damage to her bladder.

She had been suffering from urinary retention. She claimed she was discharged from hospital without being properly informed of her condition – leading to serious and permanent damage to her bladder.

Read how we helped our client to claim £815,000.

How Hospitals Can Cause Bladder Injuries

Various medical procedures can result in injuries to the bladder or ureters (tubes that carry urine from the kidneys to the bladder).

It is not just urinary surgery that can go wrong and cause injuries to the bladder. The increase in keyhole surgery on women’s reproductive organs has led to a rise in ureter injuries.

Also, ureteroscopy procedures on kidney stones can lead to abrasion or perforation of the ureters. These procedures can also cause infections, abnormal pain or bleeding and the inability to urinate (due to swollen tissues).

Errors can also occur during Foley catheter replacement (changing a tube used to drain urine from the bladder) or during the insertion of a trocar (a hollow needle-like instrument) below the navel during keyhole surgery.

Bladder injuries can also be caused by:

  • damage to the spinal cord
  • cystitis – a common form of urinary tract infection (especially among patients using urinary catheters)
  • radiation treatment
  • side effects from certain medicines such as antipsychotic drugs, antidepressants, opioids and anaesthetics.

Has Urinary Retention Caused Your Bladder Injury?

Urinary retention means that you are unable to empty your bladder completely. This condition falls into two types:

  • chronic – there are no initial symptoms, you gradually have more difficulty urinating, your urine stream is weak, you are in pain
  • acute – symptoms appear suddenly, you can’t urinate, you suffer significant abdominal pain, you need immediate medical attention.

Always seek immediate medical help if you are suffering from urine retention: this condition can lead to very serious and potentially life-threatening consequences.

Urinary retention is more common among older men but it can also affect women (it can be an unpleasant side-effect of pregnancy).

Misdiagnosed Bladder Cancer

Bladder cancer symptoms include blood in the urine, dysuria (pain or a burning sensation while urinating) and sudden urges to urinate. Unfortunately, doctors can misdiagnose these symptoms as a urinary tract infection and try to treat them with antibiotics.

Patients with suspected cancer of the bladder should be referred to a urology specialist for further examination and a series of tests. They include checking your medical history and carrying out blood tests, liver and renal function tests, a cytological examination (screening cells for cancer) and bacteriological examination.

In addition to a urologist, the medical team treating you may include a clinical oncologist, a pathologist and a radiologist. 

Has your GP or hospital failed to carry out any procedures that could have sped up the correct diagnosis and treatment of your cancer? Have their delays caused your condition to worsen to more advanced muscle-invasive cancer?

Lack Of Informed Consent

Your doctors will ask you to give your consent for treatment, particularly where surgical operations or other complex procedures are involved. For your consent to be valid, you must have been fully informed of all the risks and possible side effects.

You should also have been told whether there were any less risky procedures – so you could make an informed choice of which treatment you would prefer, based on the expected likelihood of success and the severity of any potential risks.

You may well have signed a complex document consenting to treatment for your bladder condition. But unless you were given all the facts, that consent may not be valid. You may be able to claim that you did not give informed consent – giving you possible grounds to sue for medical negligence.

Further Reading

Find out more here about claiming compensation for bladder injuries. The information includes:

  • bladder conditions, symptoms and causes
  • bladder ruptures due to medical negligence
  • misdiagnosis of cystitis
  • urinary retention compensation claims.

Learn about No Win No Fee medical negligence claims – how the process works, how it protects you financially.  

Get Expert Legal Help

Have you suffered because a GP or consultant failed to diagnose your injuries correctly? Or because a surgeon made an error? Were there failures in your post-operative care? Were there complications? Were you discharged too early? Did the hospital fail to follow up afterwards? 

Contact Coles Miller Partner David Simpson, head of the Medical Negligence Department, for more information about claiming compensation for bladder injuries.