Henry v Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust [2020] EWHC 3306 (QB) (07 December 2020)

claim for personal injury caused by alleged clinical negligence arising out of posterior instrumental fusion surgery which took place on 22 July 2010. C alleges there was failure to recognise misplacement of the L5 pedicle screw, either intra-operatively, in the immediate post-operative period or longer term. No issue is taken with the placement of the pedicle screw. C’s case was that he suffered impingement or irritation of the L5 nerve root caused by the pedicle screw from July 2010 until its removal in 2015. [1]

The allegations of negligence set out in the particulars of claim fall into three categories:

i) Allegations of negligence during the surgery. A failure to use AP imaging and a radiolucent operating table and a failure to recognise the misplaced screw.

ii) Allegations of negligence in the days after surgery. A failure to act upon C’s complaint of symptoms and organise a further CT scan.

iii) Allegations concerning subsequent scans and missed opportunities to identify that the misplaced screw was causing C problems. A failure in May 2011 to identify a left sided radiculopathy could be related to the misplaced screw and failure to ensure the CT scan recommended in November 2011 was carried out and reported effectively and without delay. [16]

D denied all aspects of C’s case. Breach of duty, causation and quantum were all in issue. [18]

the claim fails both in relation to breach of duty and causation… judgment for D [62]