A claim for an undiagnosed intra cerebral subarachnoid haemorrhage has been resolved in court with the approval of a €2.7 million compensation settlement.
Paula Dundon (42) – a mother of three from Brownstown in County Kildare – attended the Naas General Hospital on 26th June 2006, complaining of severe headaches, nausea and vomiting. Paula was admitted to the hospital and administered painkillers. She later underwent a CT scan on her brain.
Doctors at the hospital failed to identify what was causing Paula to suffer such severe headaches and a second scan was conducted on 29th June. The second scan showed a large intra cerebral bleed on the left side of her brain and Paula was transferred to the Beaumont Hospital.
Further investigation at the Beaumont Hospital revealed an intra cerebral subarachnoid haemorrhage; however, due to the passage of time between attending Naas General Hospital and her injury being diagnosed, Paula suffered brain damage and she now requires around the clock care.
Paula´s husband – Michael – made a claim for an undiagnosed intra cerebral subarachnoid haemorrhage, alleging that the delayed in diagnosing his wife´s injury could have been avoided and was attributable to hospital negligence. He claimed that an adequate assessment and prompt diagnosis would have mitigated the level of injury Paula sustained.
The Health Service Executive (HSE) contested the element of the claim for an undiagnosed intra cerebral subarachnoid haemorrhage relating to the failure to adequately assess Paula, but admitted that there had been a failure to diagnose within an appropriate timeframe.
A €2.7 million settlement of the claim for an undiagnosed intra cerebral subarachnoid haemorrhage was agreed. However, as the claim had been made on behalf of Paula, the settlement had to be approved by a judge. The approval hearing took place earlier this week at the High Court before Mr Justice Kevin Cross, who – after hearing the circumstances of the case – approved the settlement and congratulated Michael for the care he had given to Paula over the past ten years.