06 February 2009
Family secure compensation after daughter suffers loss of legs
A family have secured a six-figure sum in compensation after their daughter had to have her legs amputated.
Five years ago at the age of two, Lydia Cross fell ill with meningitis and septicaemia, which initially went undiagnosed by doctors.
As a result of because soft tissue damage caused by blood poisoning, the youngster lost her legs below the knees.
She had been taken to see a doctor, who wrongly diagnosed her as suffering from a virus. Three days later, a different medic told her family she had an ear infection.
However, Lydia's temperature climbed and she began hallucinating.
Lydia's younger sister had just been in hospital suffering from meningitis and septicaemia and her mother, Jodie, was concerned that she was suffering from the same thing.
However, when she attempted to get a doctor to make a home visit, she was told this was not the surgery's practice.
Later that day, Lydia was taken by her parents to the medical practice, where a doctor immediately called an ambulance.
In a recent development, the doctor who refused to make the home visit admitted 85 per cent liability and his insurers agreed to pay compensation to the family.
Meningitis can cause a range of symptoms, including severe headaches, vomiting and a skin rash.
Paul Sankey, partner at Russell Jones & Walker, commented: "It is crucial that doctors are alert to the possibility of conditions like meningitis and septicaemia before they do serious harm.
"Tragically there are cases where a delay in diagnosis can lead to amputation, brain injury and other devastating injuries for which no amount of money can properly compensate."
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