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Nurse Receives Complex Regional Pain Syndrome Compensation

A nurse from Edinburgh has recently received £50,000 in compensation after developing CRPS in her wrist. Find out more here.


Kathleen Ann McLeish, a 60-year-old nurse from Edinburgh, slipped on a wet floor, fell and broke her wrist in 2011 while working as an emergency nurse practitioner within the Emergency Department of the Edinburgh Royal Infirmary. As a result of her injury, Kathleen then went on to develop complex regional pain syndrome, a condition which is known for causing a plethora of extremely painful symptoms, such as swelling, burning and extreme sensitivity. Due to the condition having such a negative impact on her life in every capacity, Kathleen recently received £50,000 in complex regional pain syndrome compensation. To find out more about her story, read our blog.

Kathleen was working on the day that she suffered her wrist injury, which was caused by the wet floor she slipped on. After the initial accident took place, Kathleen momentarily fainted in the resuscitation room and was immediately sent to the A&E department where, after receiving X-rays, a black slab was added to her fractured wrist and she was sent home with painkillers. Two weeks later, she was admitted to hospital and underwent surgery to have an external fixation placed on her wrist and lower arm. Soon after, her fingers became swollen and extremely painful and, although no infection was discovered by professionals, Kathleen was prescribed antibiotics.

Six weeks later, the fixation was removed from Kathleen’s wrist and lower arm and she began to attend physiotherapy on a weekly basis. Although a reasonable degree of movement returned to her wrist and fingers, she still felt stiffness, restricted movement, and swelling in her hand and wrist. By September the same year, three months after the initial fall took place, Kathleen was continuing to experience a feeling of tightness around her wrist, as well as considerable swelling in the fingers on her left hand, intermittent colour changes, and occasional shooting pains.

Due to her persistent symptoms, she was then diagnosed with complex regional pain syndrome in her left hand, which was directly caused by the fracture she obtained from the initial fall. CRPS is a poorly understood condition which affects approximately 1 in 3,800 UK people each year. The condition is usually caused by an accident or trauma, typically affecting the limbs. As a sufferer, Kathleen’s life has changed in a negative way; not only has she had to adjust the clothes she wears, only wearing clothing with zips opposed to buttons, she also struggles to dress herself independently, and has had to employ a gardener due to the severe pain she experiences. In addition, Kathleen has had to give up swimming and playing the piano, both of which are hobbies she enjoyed taking part in. Her confidence at work has been affected and, due to the fact she feels socially isolated from her friends and family, she has become depressed, has put on weight, and has had to be signed off work in order to recover.

Due to the way Kathleen’s life has been affected, and the fact that no verbal, signed, or visible, warning was given to her to confirm that the floor was wet, the Court ruled the NHS responsible, issuing Kathleen with a sum of £50,000 in complex regional pain syndrome compensation – a sum which should help to improve her quality of life and ease some of the burden she feels as a sufferer.

If you suffer with CRPS as a result of an accident or injury that wasn’t your fault, you could be entitled to compensation, just like Kathleen. If you suspect this may be the case, read up on how the CRPS law process works, get in touch with our expert team of lawyers by calling 0808 123 0003 or filling in our online contact form, and discuss your case in more detail.

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