Laser Eye Surgery Claims
Laser eye surgery is an increasingly popular surgical procedure for people who suffer with astigmatism, short sightedness or long sightedness. In most cases laser eye surgery can remove the need for a person to need spectacles or contact lenses or at least lessen the requirements for them.
As with all forms of surgery, there are some risks involved. All of which should be discussed in great detail with the patient prior to the procedure taking place so that proper informed consent can be guaranteed. For example, some patients having undergone laser eye surgery have complained about night vision problems, a haloing affect when viewing bright lights and eye dryness, but these are acknowledged possible side effects from the procedure which normally calm down after time. As such they wouldn’t usually give rise to a medical negligence claim as they should have been communicated to the patient beforehand that they are known potential side effects to the treatment.
A case could potentially be made for a medical negligence claim if the patient had undergone laser eye surgery and there had been a surgical error during the procedure, or the patients eyesight had actually deteriorated after the operation and continued to be worse on an ongoing basis. In extreme cases, if the equipment has not been operated correctly or the surgeon has made a severe error it has been known for patients to lose their sight entirely.
If you are considering making a medical negligence claim after having had laser eye surgery the result of which could be considered as negligent you may wish to view the following sections.
Successful Laser Eye Surgery Claims
The law firm Irwin Mitchell detail two recent successful claims for laser eye surgery compensation via medical negligence claims. The first case involved a gentleman that worked in IT that had previously been refused laser eye surgery when in South Africa some years ago due to him having an uneven surface of the cornea. He attended a clinic in the UK years later and informed the ophthalmologist that he had previously been refused but was seeking advice to see if the technology had improved in time that would allow for the treatment to take place. An assessment was made by the UK ophthalmologist and it was determined that he was suitable to go forward for Lasik laser eye surgery. This turned out to not be the case. After treatment the gentleman’s eyesight deteriorated to such as extent that he was not longer able to do his IT job and it was confirmed that his eyesight would continue to deteriorate without further surgery. The ophthalmologist admitted that the patient was not a suitable client and Irwin Mitchell won the client a compensation payout of £90,000.
The second case also involved a lack of suitability for laser eye surgery, in fact the patient was currently suffering with Fuchs Endothelial Dystrophy, however, the laser eye surgery was recommended (without the centre properly informing the patient of the risks) in both eyes and pursuant to the surgery the patient suffered a severe deterioration in her eyesight which required corneal transplants and further treatment. The Centre, the contact lens optician and the ophthalmic surgeon were issued with court proceedings after which the surgeon admitted liability and £150,000 was awarded in compensation.