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Child cancer negligence claims

There can’t be many things worse for parents and families than to receive the news that their child has cancer. September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month and helps highlight the impact of cancer on young people and their family. This short article highlights some of the legal issues that might arise if you think that your child’s cancer was misdiagnosed, or diagnosed later than is should be, which could mean that you are able to bring a medical negligence claim. 

If you are a parent, regular attendance at a GP is par for the course. Little ones can present with a whole host of medical issues, from tummy aches to tiredness; raised temperatures to achy limbs, therefore it’s not necessarily easy to realise when something is seriously wrong.

Children can’t express themselves as well as adults, therefore there is an added reliance on GPs and other medical experts to come to the correct diagnosis and administer the right treatment.

Cancers in children are no different from those in adults in that the genesis of the disease is where one of the cells become abnormal, and then continues dividing and multiplying.  However, the types of cancer affecting children can be quite different from those that affect teenagers and young adults, which it might not always be the case that children get a correct and prompt cancer diagnosis.

The most common form of childhood leukaemia is Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia, which is a cancer of the white blood cells.  Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia is an over production of immature lymphoid cells (one of the two different types of white blood cell).  These immature lymphoid cells fill up the bone marrow and stop it making healthy blood cells.  Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia accounts for almost 80% of all childhood leukaemia’s and 25% of all childhood cancers.

Some of the more prevalent solid tumours of children make up about 30% of all paediatric cancers, the most common being brain tumours or neuroblastoma.   Brain and spinal cord tumours are commonly referred to as Central Nervous System, or CNS tumours.

When it comes to cancer negligence cases, parents often tell us that they knew instinctively that something was seriously wrong, but that they had to ‘push’ for a diagnosis. Common features of cancer negligence claims include repeated visits to the GP complaining of the same thing, or the feeling that Doctors never quite got the bottom of what the problem was.

If you have got any of these concerns about the diagnosis and treatment of your child’s cancer, then get in touch with us so that we can advise and support you. We will investigate your concerns and establish whether you have a medical negligence claim. Our solicitors and lawyers are highly experienced, approachable and can be trusted to do their very best for you and your child.

Call us on: 01603 877000

Simon Bransby

Photo by Piron Guillaume on Unsplash

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