Blood clots are very common. Symptoms may have resulted from a period of immobility, including long haul flights and time spent in bed after surgery. Although getting a blood clot can sometimes be put down to bad luck, they can be prevented following surgery but only if the right treatment is administered. If this isn’t done correctly, your clot may have been caused by medical negligence for which you should receive compensation.
Put simply, it is a mass of blood that has changed from liquid to a gel-like or semisolid state.
According to the NHS, thousands of people in the UK develop a blood clot in a vein every year. This is more popularly known in the medical profession as venous thromboembolism (VTE), which also encompasses:
Deep vein thrombosis (DVT): A blood clot in a deep vein in the body, such as the leg.
Pulmonary embolism: A blood clot in the blood vessel which is responsible for carrying your blood from the heart to the lungs.
Whilst people presume long haul flights are the cause, which is sometimes the case, lengthy periods of inactivity or immobility after surgery can also lead to a blood clot.
What people don’t tend to realise is that blood clots like this can result in permanent damage or long-term pain relating to the area of surgery.
In extreme cases, the blood clot can travel around the body to the lung, which can result in death.
Preventing blood clots after surgery is the responsibility of the medical professionals in charge of your procedure. They must do everything they can to prevent blood clots from forming. This can include prescribing Warfarin, a blood-thinning medication, and advising you to wear compression socks or stockings 24 hours a day.
Failure to do this could result in a potentially dangerous, damaging or fatal blood clot forming.
Doctors, GPs and medical professionals are responsible for accurately and correctly diagnosing DVT and blood clots before they become serious.
Failure to do so can result in a pulmonary embolism – a blockage in the pulmonary artery, the blood vessel which helps to carry blood from the heart to the lungs. This blockage can be life-threatening because it prevents blood reaching the lungs.
When trying to diagnose this issue, all of the following lifestyle factors should be taken into account to allow an accurate and timely diagnosis to be reached.
The amount of compensation awarded for a blood clot injury depends on the type and severity of the problems experienced.
However, all of the following factors will be taken into account:
Meet our expert: Renu Daly, a specialist medical negligence solicitor who handles blood clot injury claims
“If medical professionals let you down by failing to identify a potential risk and you later develop a blood clot injury or pulmonary embolism, their treatment could be seen as being negligent.
“Because we understand the detrimental effect that this can have on your social life, work life and family life, we do everything we can to get you back on the road to recovery as soon as possible. We also try to factor in the psychological stress which may have been suffered as a result of being let down.
“Unfortunately, we do deal with cases where complications or errors have proven to be fatal – and this is where our experience comes to the fore as we seek to gain accountability and get the answers which the loved ones who are left behind deserve.
“If you think you or someone you know is the victim of a blood clot injury which was the result of medical negligence, get in touch with us immediately.
“All of our blood clot injury claims specialists are experienced at handling these sensitive cases and will do all they can to ensure the legal process is as simple as possible, taking the stress and worry off your shoulders.”
As is usually the case with medical negligence claims, you have three years from suffering the blood clot injury, or the date when you realised the blood clot was caused as a result of negligence, to make a claim.
For claimants who are aged under 18, the three-year time limit starts on their 18th birthday and ends the day they turn 21 and any blood clot compensation claims must begin during this time.
In cases where a blood clot has resulted in a fatality, the victim’s family or loved ones have three years from the date they died to start a claim.
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