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Lester Aldridge has successfully concluded a complex clinical negligence claim and secured a settlement for a substantial five-figure sum for a client following laboratory failures in diagnosing cervical cancer.

The case concerned a client who had attended a cervical smear test. The laboratory responsible for testing the slide taken during the client’s smear failed to identify atypical and potentially cancerous cells in the sample correctly and incorrectly categorised the sample as “unsuitable”. The client continued to suffer symptoms and sought medical advice from her GP.

Following further tests, the client was diagnosed with invasive cervical cancer. She underwent a radical hysterectomy, among other surgeries, to remove a tumour in the cervix. The delayed diagnosis by the laboratory and consequential delay in receiving treatment caused the client prolonged pain and suffering and resulted in the client being at an increased risk of cancer recurrence than if the atypical cells had been noted by the laboratory when the first smear was taken.

Through lengthy negotiations with the defendant and with the support of expert reports on the client’s condition, we were able to secure a settlement for the client in the sum for a substantial five-figure sum in recognition of their suffering.

The client commented on receipt of the settlement sum, “I want to thank you for everything you have done!”.

Helen Clement, an Associate in the Personal Injury team who acted for the client, says:

“I was so pleased to have settled this claim for my client as it was clear that the defendant failed to properly report on the smear slide, causing my client unnecessary pain and discomfort which affected her everyday life, particularly caring for her two small children.”