19 May, 2021
The Times newspaper recently reported advances in artificial intelligence (AI) to help detect fractured bones that might otherwise be missed by radiologists.
This sounds like an exciting development, particularly in relation to wrist fractures, where a fracture of the scaphoid bone is often difficult to detect. A scaphoid fracture is often described as a classic injury sustained when someone puts their hand out to break a fall. The hand is bent back and the scaphoid bone in the wrist fractures. If that fracture is missed and the bone fails to heal, an individual can be left with long-term complications, restriction of movement and may eventually need an operation to replace the bone.
This new technology will hopefully assist radiologists in identifying the fractures, but it does not avoid the need and the legal duty of a radiologist to use the appropriate skill and care required to review the x-rays adequately and identify any issues.
Here at Forbes Solicitors, we have dealt with a number of cases over the years where an individual has attended accident and emergency following a fall. The hospital sends them home without an x-ray thinking that it's a simple sprain. That can be appropriate in some circumstances, but it is equally important that the individual is advised to return if symptoms do not improve, so that x-rays can be carried out to identify whether or not there has been a fracture. Failure to provide that advice or to carry out an x-ray in a significant case could be considered negligent.
If you have had the misfortune of a misdiagnosis or a missed fracture you may have a case to claim compensation. Please contact us for a no obligation, no-win no fee advice on whether you might have a claim.
For more information contact John Bennett in our Clinical Negligence department via email or phone on 01254 872111. Alternatively send any question through to Forbes Solicitors via our online Contact Form.