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£500,000 settlement for a 64-year-old medical consultant who sustained a concussive head injury in a workplace accident in an operating theatre.
On his case he sustained a mild probable TBI together with mild neurocognitive disorder with behavioural disturbance due to TBI (DSM 5–331.83).
Following the head injury, he experienced a classic syndrome of symptoms associated with TBI including headache, sleep disturbance, memory difficulties, reduced concentration, reduced motivation, noise intolerance, low mood, anxiety, emotional lability, irritability, tearfulness and most importantly, heightened mental fatigue upon intellectual exertion.
After a short period away following the accident, he returned to work, working full-time both in his NHS and private medical practices, attempting to buffer the above symptoms.
By the second anniversary of the accident his ability to cope with this struggle weakened and he cut down his NHS hours. At the 3½ year anniversary of the accident he resigned from his NHS post five years early because he felt the enduring syndrome of symptoms undermined his efficacy to cope with high level emergency clinical work in his professional discipline.
He continued his less stressful and less demanding private practice through to his normal retirement age. He brought a claim for £602,000 comprising principally general damages and his resulting loss of earnings and pension income.
In the absence of positive findings on MRI or CT to substantiate TBI, the defendant did not understand the claimant’s subjective report of enduring symptoms in medical terms, and instead sought to attribute his decisions to reduce and stop his NHS practice aged 60 to unrelated lifestyle choices or unrelated psychological factors.
A prolonged and expensive litigation ensued with expert evidence commissioned by both parties from experts in the fields of neurology, neuropsychiatry, neuropsychology and accountancy.
Joint statements in 2022 confirmed that there was a substantial neurological explanation underpinning the subjective report of symptoms.
The case settled at 80% of the claimant’s schedule through negotiation a few months before trial.