Vasculitis UK
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sue GP and hospital for lack of knowledge/misdiagnosis causing delay in treatment?

HHeyy everyone.

I went to my GP Back in February this year before going to walk in clinics in January for ear aches and nose bleed with joint pains all over either general feverish symptoms that if be

Been having since November. I also complained on my second visit to the GP. A week later of sharp prodding pains in the sole of my feet.

I needed to go GP for a sick note. She told me to do a blood test and said take ibuprofen twice a day. Not having ever done blood test in all 26 years of my life and hating sight of blood I delayed it as ling as I could. In total I was on ibuprofen for 2 weeks straight. she hadn't checked to see if my ear infection (euchastraial dysfunction) had cleared after tellung her f these (walk in clinic and extended hours service -each once) or checked my blood pressure or heart rate.

Following week I went back for another were off as I was literally limping and in so much pain, she simply said when I asked for a sick note to see my occupational therapist and that she cannot be giving me sick notes after reluctantly writing one wen I told her what I do for an occupation. She also Sdid she can't comment much because I still hadn't done the blood test to test for inflammation.

My mum came with n I did blood a call on a Thursday saying I should make an appointment to see GP of my blood result but it wasn't that serious or else they'd tell me to come immediately. I made it for the earliest which was the Monday with another GP. I ENDED UP GOING into hospital on the Sunday.

When I was discharged in April I called GP. She did a home visit and I had to ask her to check my temperature.

She also she said she was not informed of me being hospitalised or in a coma on the phone from either hospital. She after said she got one letter from second hospital were I was transferred to royal London but had no diagnosis -LIE! I asked for a copy of that which she gave and it was whilst Iwas still admitted in hospital ICU and it said ANCA positive vasculitis!

But she was Bbeing very sympathetic and too nice....did she know she should've explored all those symptoms properly when I told her originally? She explained that she was not hot on vasculitis and That the blood test would've only said there was an inflammation but not where.

Just feel like she should've enquired how her patient was doing in hospital and after getting the blood.result back and I didn't turn up for my appointment wouldn't you enquiry? Plus my family said that Newham general Dr in ICU had called my GP for wanting more details of my she telling the truth...because it doesn't add.

The first hospital I went into...Newham general I contracted MRSA from and they misdiagnosed me with tuberculosis and pneumonia. I had died and had to be resuscitated literally 3 times. My family and friends said staff were horrible too. I just about remember that they wouldn't come when i called for them and had to wait hour or more to be cleaned (wasn't able to use toilet myself)

My family telling me to sue. But I feel like my GP knows me now... and apparently it's really hard to sue a hospital for negligence in contracting MRSA....and I don't remember much. I went into a coma couple days in.

Thank you

8 Replies

Wow, you had a rough time! Worse than my initial experiences with Vasculitis (Wegener's). Lots of similarities though. My GP missed it completely. I was in and out of his surgery for maybe 5 months. Eventually, I insisted on being referred to hospital and I was admitted to the infectious diseases dept.

What is obvious is that the average GP doesn't know much about anything obscure. They are generalists. As for suing for late diagnosis, I don't think you have much hope.

BUT, the MRSA part may be different!

My Mother passed away 2 years ago. She had been admitted to our local hospital with a UTI. Poor old thing had advanced dementia and was doubly incontinent so this did happen from time to time. Anyway, they dosed her up and managed to fix her UTI. That part was good. THEN, they sent her back to her Care Home ....... but with more than just her clothes. She was discharged with a very nasty dose of Norovirus. To cut a long story short she deteriorated very quickly and died 16 days later. You could easily take the view that, at 93, something was going to get her.

The hospital staff had been dreadful and by the time I had a chance to think about it I decided to write the Trust a letter. It was very long and very detailed. I received a response dismissing every point with not even an apology. Dreadful. At this point, I decided that I was going to lodge a FORMAL claim against the hospital for carelessness in allowing my Mother to become infected. By my way of thinking poor infection control IS carelessness. MRSA, too, can be prevented!! At the outset I decided that I didn't want to benefit financially and that if I I did manage to achieve a financial settlement it would be donated to her (and our) favourite charity. As soon as I made the FORMAL claim it got tough. I was diverted to the Trust's solicitors who we, quite frankly, horrible. My claim was for £10,000. One of the solicitors even commented (sadly only on the phone) that '£10k was an awful lot of money for a 93 year old life' Hard to believe. Anyway, I pressed on, continued to write and generally harass them. I was not prepared to let it drop - principle! At one stage I even received a (dismissive) letter from Sir David Nicholson (he's been in the press a lot).

Finally, 2 or 3 months later I received an envelope. In it were 2 letters. One stated that in order to pursue my claim for £10k, I would need to provide huge amounts of evidence - stuff that I simply did not have access to. However, in the same envelope there was another letter offering me £2500 'with no blame admitted'. In other words, we know we screwed up so please accept this and go away. Amazing. It took a lot of badgering to get to that point!

So, we ended up with £2500. Our favourite charity ended up with a healthy donation which purchased 2 assistance dogs (puppies) for training. All I can say is that I know my Mother would have been delighted.

So, it's very much your call. It is possible to get recompense as the last thing they want is negative publicity. They'll pay you out to shut up.

If you think you're up to it, do it yourself or with help from family / friends. Personally, I would forget using a solicitor (only my opinion) as I know they would have dragged it out and charged a fortune. However, don't let it consume you and don't let it make you ill !!

Worth thinking about!

Good luck!

PS Oh, and write to your MP and to Jeremy Hunt. He may be useless but he is the Health Secretary!


Hi Dblox, I fully understand how you feel, my MPA vasculitis was missed for a good year, I do believe however that for the average GP it is a hard one to diagnosed. Having said that I started to have direct symptoms that should have suggested that I had some kind of inflammatory process going on, and therefore needed a specialist input. I am a nurse myself and have friends that are both nursing and medical, I had to use private insurance to see a Rheumatologist, as my NHS appointment was far in advance and I was struggling.The true symptoms of my MPA did not appear obvious until my renal function went off. I too eventually was taken into hospital and now under the Addenbrookes Vasculitis team. I certainly did not go through the rigours of your story and I thought I was hard done by. I did sit and express myself to my GP, most hospitals have a PALs service, maybe you should start there, seeing your MP is also a good one, personally reading your story I think you have been let down by many along the way. I hope that you are now having good and correct treatment. Pam


good luck for the future hope all goes well I to made a complaint just got a letter to say sorry for your ordeal and cambs 13 forget pals they don't help I complained to them but heard nothing


I tried sueing my employer for an accident at work and it dragged out for years and the stress was horrendous. The stress affected me physically and mentally and put enormous pressure on our family. I thank my husband for supporting me and also for deciding with me to take the settlement because although I lost financially I had the knowledge and peace of mind that they wouldn't have settled if they truly believed they were in the right.

Although I decided to settle out of court the costs incurred negated the settlement I received; had to do this or go the whole hog and attend court and, where I live, if I lost I would have been liable for my own and my employer's legal expenses and the court's costs, so could have ultimately lost everything including our home. The risk was just too great.

I would probably have had a gagging order to prevent me discussing this publicly if I had gone further as well, so by not signing anything to prevent me talking I can go to the papers and media and help others by making details public whenever I want, quoting from my experience both with my employer and the legal process involved - which was another positive outcome for me, because I am quite vocal on local issues.

Over here you can get an hour's free legal advice from the Citizen's Advice Bureau and that can be useful when making an informed decision as to how to move forward, whether that's seeking formal legal advice or writing complaints letters etc.

I can't tell you what is right or wrong, you have to be truly comfortable in whatever you decide to do and have the support of those around you.

Good luck in whatever you decide!


Hi, so sorry to hear what you have been through. My Cerebral Vasculitis too was mis-diagnosed, I spent two seperate weeks in hospital in agony, having mini strokes! My local hospital didnt even recognise these?

My family wrote to the Trust and all we received, as cedric did was a letter apologising to say how sorry they were! Bit late for that as I then went onto have a major stroke with a diagnosis of Cerebral Vasculitis?

Good luck with the future for you.



hi all,

thank you for your comments. much appreciated.

i contacted a solicitor who said will call me with more information to see if its worth pursuing as i'm not sure how to fund the costs as am only in reciept of statutory sick pay. (cant claim for any other welfare benefit and not entitled to free prescriptions either - ridiculous considering i need to pay for cab costs to and from hospital and £8 for all 11 prescribed medication im on, but a different blog!)

i spoke to someone from the records team at the hospital and managed to get a discharge summary sent to me for free as i wasn't given one because i was transferred to another hospital. She freely said herself if its for the solicitors they will pay the £50 fee for access to my records, i thought it weird she say that. When i received the letter next day on the first page under CHRONIC DIAGNOSIS it read MRSA - which is probably why she mentioned solicitors, still they must get a lot of people suing them for her to mention it.

will keep you posted, its between a matter of principle/ will and costs, i guess.

just because im not sure whether i was treated orgiven anything for tubercolosis, i remember they moved into a separate room because if it being contagious, but than they spoke of it being pneumonia. i literally fell into a coma a couple days in and to this day dont know what really happened.



Good luck with this. I had a similar story and did go down the Solicitors route. By the way if you have 'legal expenses' for example on your house insurance you can use that- i did.

However, not only do you have to prove that they were wrong, but also that you had a negative outcome as a result. Trouble is with Vasculitis they will argue that you would have had all the symptoms anyway. You are also 'suing' the same hospital that is treating you. In the end I changed GPS and settled for the fact that the GMC struck my surgeon off, so he couldn't do the same to anyone else. Then i think you have to put it behind you and get on with your life. I know it's not easy- i too was in ITU for 3 months, lost fingertips (gangrene), got MRSA(only found out when District nurse came to see me and told me!)but that was 5 years ago now and I'm in remission, with no recent flares. working full-time and generally back to 'normal'. I hope you can be too.


Hi all...just to update. Solicitor wrote a letter back saying they cannot pursue it as feel there's insufficient evidence but to go to another solicitor if I wanted to and that here's a 3yr cap on these court proceedings. She also ssuggested that I write a complaint letter....does anyone have one they could let me share or get me going in some ways?

Many many thanks.

I told her I contracted MRSA from Newham general hospital...treated and misdiagnosed first with tuberculosis and as a result went into septic shock. May have been easier to just send her a c copy of my discharge summary. I'm now more determined to sue them because I'm thinking about it more, the stress mtg family went through

I had 2 pneumaotharaxes 1 they failed to recognise and was only discovered upon transfer of hospital

1 hypotension pneumothaorax

In a coma just under a month

Lost kidney liver n lung function....had 3 chest drains inserted. 1 was tirned into a surgical procedure. Scars are still there and not healed. Have to cover my arms as scars are still there too! I over reacting? Because my vasculitis really effected my lung yes....but contracting the MRSA caused everything. Worse-my sister said to me that apparently the nurse kept asking jersey overtime she was using her phone whether she was recording??? Weird question to ask? Similar to you Sara, my family were unaware about me having MRSA until they realised I was being treated for it when the nurse replied I didn't have it but given the medicine for kt as a preventative measure. Discharge summary said I did have many lies. It costs £50 for access to mtmy records!!! An arm n a leg!

Will keep u posted.

Thank you, R


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