Compartment syndrome is a painful and potentially serious condition caused by bleeding or swelling within an enclosed bundle of muscles (a muscle 'compartment').
This causes increased pressure within the compartment which can lead to a restricted blood flow meaning oxygen and nutrients cannot get to the muscles and nerves, leading to tissue damage.
The symptoms of compartment syndrome depend on whether you have acute compartment syndrome – which happens suddenly, after injury – or chronic compartment syndrome, which comes on gradually.
Acute compartment syndrome usually happens after a fracture or a crush injury but can also be caused by severe bruising of a muscle or in rare cases without an injury at all. It causes intense pain often out of proportion with the injury suffered and can also cause a feeling of tightness in the muscle and of tingling/burning in the skin.
Acute compartment syndrome is a medical emergency and requires quick diagnosis and treatment.
For this reason, medical negligence claims we see relating to compartment syndrome usually relate to either:
- A delay in diagnosis of the condition
- A delay in commencing appropriate treatment once the condition has been diagnosed
Depending upon the circumstances of the case the misdiagnosis by clinicians will most likely be with a GP, A&E Department or Orthopaedic Department.
If compartment syndrome is not quickly diagnosed and treated then it increases the likelihood of a patient developing severe injuries including:
- Permanent muscle damage
- Permanent nerve damage
- Reduced function of the affected limb and permanent disability
- Significant scarring from surgical procedures
- Kidney failure
If you think that you or a family member may have suffered an injury as a result of failures to promptly diagnose and treat compartment syndrome then you may be entitled to compensation.
We know that injuries from compartment syndrome can cause profound problems impacting upon every aspect of your life and can result in psychological as well as physical damage.
We at Freemans have a wealth of experience in dealing with all types of Clinical Negligence claims and we will work tirelessly to ensure that not only is compensation secured for the pain and losses caused by the injuries suffered but that support and any further treatment and rehabilitation needed can be sought.
Please call one of our solicitors today on 0191 222 1030 for a free consultation in relation to your claim or complete our website enquiry form.