A woman has been awarded a €2.7 million compensation settlement after her cerebral subarachnoid haemorrhage went undiagnosed.
When Paula Dundon, aged forty-two from Brownstone in Co. Kildare, was complaining of nauseousness and vomiting in June 2006, she went to Naas General Hospital. There, she was administered painkillers before she was admitted and then had a CT scan performed upon her.
Despite the scan, doctors couldn’t identify what was wrong with Paula. A second scan was carried out a few days later, which identified a cerebral bleed to the left side of Paula’s brain. The mother of three was then transferred to Beaumont Hospital.
An investigation at Beaumont Hospital diagnosed the bleed on Paula’s brain as an intra-cerebral subarachnoid haemorrhage. However, the delay in diagnosis between the injury occurring and the transfer to Beaumont meant that Paula sustained permanent brain damage that means she is reliant on care.
Michael Dundon, acting on his wife’s behalf, sought legal advice before proceeding to make a claim for compensation for an undiagnosed intra-cerebral subarachnoid haemorrhage. In the claim, he alleged that his wife’s injury could have been avoided though an adequate assessment and diagnosis of his injuries.
Part of the claim was contested by the HSE, who denied that they did not adequately assess Paula’s condition. However, they admitted that the diagnosis had not been made quickly enough.
After negotiations, a €2.7 million settlement of compensation was decided between the parties. However, the case needed to be heard ahead of a judge as the claim was made on behalf of someone unable to present themselves. The hearing took place earlier this month at the High Court, where Mr Justice Kevin Cross, who approved the settlement before congratulating Michael on the care he had given Paula over the last ten years.