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Possible clinical negligence after patient is sent home from Medway Hospital A&E with fractured spine

Medway Hospital has once again been thrust into the limelight after it was revealed that a patient had been sent home with what turns out to be a fractured spine.  She was taken to the A&E department, via a land ambulance, after a bad fall down the stairs and was X-rayed. 

Amazingly, following the X-Ray, she was then advised to go home and was prescribed with pain killers. When she returned home, she continued to experience intense pain and then developed a chest infection.  After three weeks at home, she was contacted by Medway hospital who had reviewed her case and advised her to come back in for treatment.

The 61 year old woman discovered that the hospital had missed that she had a fractured vertebrae in the middle of her spine and that she needed immediate treatment otherwise she could be left with a permanent stoop.

She was fitted with a chest brace but the delay in treatment and chest infection may been she could suffer permanent spinal damage.

The woman said: “When I was told about the break I was in shock. It makes you think what the situation would have been if I had been admitted and not sent home.

“Would I still be faced with walking with a stoop?

“I was walking round, doing my chores and looking after the children.

“My message would be: go with your gut instinct”

“I just thought it was a case of managing my pain. After all, I was told everything was all clear, I was OK to go home. There was no follow-up appointment.”

“I know they are the experts, but go for a second opinion if you don’t think things are right.

“I have a strong pain threshold, but I was taking painkillers every two hours for three weeks and it was not getting any better.

“I appreciate there has to be a safety net, so all X-rays are reviewed, but three weeks is not acceptable in my eyes.”

A Medway spokesperson said: “I apologise if Mrs Robbins is unhappy with her care.

“Our emergency department X-rays are reviewed twice as a matter of course, once by the doctor or nurse seeing the patient and a second time by a radiologist or reporting radiographer to ensure no injuries or subtle changes are missed.


As with any clinical negligence compensation claim, it is vital to find a solicitor that has expertise in this complex area. Our team works with the country’s leading medical experts in this area of clinical negligence to ensure that we offer the very best legal advice.

If you or a loved one has been unfortunate enough to have experienced  poor medical care from medical staff then contact us now at Thorneycroft Solicitors today for a free no-obligation assessment of your case on 0800 1979 345 or complete our online enquiry form.

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