$150,000.00 Settlement at Mediation Following delayed diagnosis of Breast Cancer by GP and Radiologist

Published 30 Oct 2014

This is a claim which essentially relies on the delay in diagnosis of breast cancer. The First defendant was the Plaintiff’s General Practitioner and the Second and Third were the Radiologist and the organisation that employed the Radiologist.

Our client, on 24 March 2011, underwent a mammogram of her right breast at the referral of her General Practitioner. This examination revealed a small lump in our client’s right breast. Once her General Practitioner examined her radiological results she was referred back for further investigations. On 8 April 2011, an ultrasound of our client’s right breast was performed by the radiologist. That examination revealed an enlarged lymph node in the breast that was presenting as the identified lump. These results were forwarded to her General Practitioner.

Despite the highly concerning results of the ultrasound neither the Radiologist nor our clients General Practitioner acted upon them. It was not until 12 months later, when our client attended a different radiological practice, that the concerning results were acted upon. Unfortunately at this stage, the lump had increased in size. Immediately a biopsy was ordered and it was revealed that the lump was a metastatic breast carcinoma. As a result of this cancer our client had to undergo a mastectomy of her right breast.

Following this operation and being well aware that the cancerous lump was the same lump she had raised concerns about over a year ago, she approached Gerard Malouf and Partners where Leslie Abboud, a senior medical negligence lawyer with over 30 years of experience, took carriage of this matter. Mr Abboud, and his specialised medical negligence team, obtained medical expert reports and opinions that established a presence of negligence by our client’s General Practitioner and Radiologist. In their investigations it was established that it was a breach of acceptable practice to not follow up a concerning lump that may potentially be breast cancer. Not only was a biopsy not done, but no follow-up whatsoever occurred following the presentation of concerning ultrasound results. It was considered by our panel of experts that early treatment is essential to ensure the patient has the best chance of a survival, recovery and enjoyment of their future years.

In an attempt to obtain some comfort for our client in this unfortunate situation Mr Abboud, and his experienced team, aggressively pursued this matter. After negotiation between the parties, including the specialist barrister briefed in this matter and instructed by Mr Abboud, the matter was fortunately settled in mediation without having to progress to trial. A settlement of $150,000.00 was obtained and our client was able to move on with her life and put this unfortunate event behind her.

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