Endocarditis Claims

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Endocarditis Compensation

Endocarditis is a very serious, potentially life-threatening, condition affecting the heart. The failed or delayed diagnosis of this condition can have a serious impact.

What is endocarditis?

Endocarditis arises where the inner lining of the heart and the heart valves become infected. The infection is usually caused by bacteria entering the blood stream and settling in the heart. The heart, as part of the human body, is normally well prepared to fight infection. However, if the heart valves are damaged, or if a person has an artificial valve, the infection can be missed by your immune system.

An increasing number of people are now receiving valve replacement surgery, or surgery for heart diseases. This means that rates of endocarditis are actually increasing.

What are the symptoms of endocarditis?

Symptoms can develop over a long period of time or very suddenly. The most common symptoms develop slowly over a period of weeks or months. These symptoms can include:

  • A high fever.
  • Excessive sweating.
  • General aches and pains.
  • Chest pain and heart murmurs also tend to develop.

In some cases, the symptoms can develop quickly and you can become seriously unwell in a matter of days. If endocarditis is suspected, the patient should be referred to the hospital immediately for blood tests and a scan of the heart called an echocardiogram.

Treatment for endocarditis will depend on the severity of the infection. However, it is usually treated with antibiotics through an intravenous drip. In some cases cardiac surgery may be needed. For example, if the infection does not respond well to antibiotics, or if a heart valve is badly damaged.

What happens when there is a delay in the diagnosis or treatment of endocarditis?

  • If endocarditis is diagnosed and treated early the outlook is good. Fortunately, many people can be cured with antibiotics.
  • However, if endocarditis is left untreated, it can lead to serious conditions. These conditions include: heart failure, stroke, long-term heart damage, and blood clots.

It is vital that doctors and medical professionals recognise and diagnose symptoms of endocarditis as early as possible. Unfortunately, failure to do so can result in significant injury to the patient, or in some circumstances death.

Case Study: £600,000+ in Compensation

Our client had dental treatment and began to feel ill afterwards. Despite her known risk of infective endocarditis, and multiple visits to her GP, she was not referred to a hospital. Later, she was rushed to the hospital with a suspected heart-attack. This was actually the symptoms of infective endocarditis. Due to the delay in diagnosis, she suffered a stroke whilst in the hospital. This had a life-changing effect.

You can read our case study here.

Do you have a potential medical negligence claim?

Please contact us for advice if you feel you have suffered any form of negligent treatment. Our team of specialist solicitors are always happy to help.

If you would like advice on whether you have a potential clinical negligence claim, or assistance with drafting a letter of complaint, please contact us on the number below. However, please note that there are legal time limits in place for starting a claim for compensation. Our specialist clinical negligence solicitors will be able to advise you specifically on the facts of your own case.

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Finally, if you want to learn more about our medical negligence services please click on the links below:

For free advice from our Medical Negligence solicitors, please call us direct on 01244 354688

Linda Schermer

Associate Director & Medical Negligence Solicitor

Kerry Goulden

Associate Director & Medical Negligence Solicitor

Liz Fry

Associate Director & Medical Negligence Solicitor

Emma Woodrow

Clinical Negligence Fee Earner

Chloe Rheade

Clinical Negligence Fee Earner

Martyn Elliott

Medical Negligence Solicitor