A TEENAGER from Reddish who was left severely disabled - after his GP failed to diagnose a fractured skull - has been awarded £5.75 million compensation.
Aaron Blain, now 18, was awarded the money at Chester High Court, following a week-long case between Irwin Mitchell solicitors (acting on behalf of the teenager’s family) and the Medical Defence Union, representing the Stockport doctor.
It could, however, cost around £10m to look after him for the rest of his life.
Solicitor Francesca Dowse, of Irwin Mitchell, said: "My clients have been waiting a long time for this day. The past years have been very cruel and traumatic for them.
"The on-going legal case, coupled with the round-the-clock care for their severely disabled teenager has been exhausting. The case has been open for many years as the Medical Defence Union had failed to make a satisfactory offer that would have enabled my client to receive the full-time care he needs for the rest of his life."
The compensation case relates to an undiagnosed skull fracture, which the then two-and-a-half-year-old Aaron sustained on June 21, 1993. His injury relates to a fall after his pram tipped over after it became entangled in the reins of a panicking horse.
Aaron was admitted to the Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital, Pendlebury, where he was given treatment.
And according to his legal team, the hospital then adopted a ‘wait and see’ approach, - he was discharged two days later.
His parents were told to monitor him closely and were advised to contact their GP if the toddler developed a runny nose, which would indicate a leakage of spinal fluid from his brain.
Two months later, he was seen at home by his GP Dr Sean Maguire, formerly of the Park View Practice in Reddish, because he had a runny nose.
His father expressed concern to Dr Maguire that the fluid escaping from his son’s nose might be leakage from his brain.
But the doctor diagnosed the boy with an upper respiratory infection and did not refer him back to hospital.
That October Aaron was seen by a consultant neuro-surgeon due to concerns over the leakage. The consultant made arrangements for his urgent admission to hospital for surgery.
However, in the interim period, the toddler developed meningitis. He was treated with antibiotics and then underwent surgery in November.
As a result Aaron is now deaf in his left ear, suffers with severe epilepsy and behavioural abnormalities associated with an acquired brain injury.
His grandfather, Howard Chipman, told the Stockport Express: "It was decided in 2005 to wait until Aaron was a little older in order to determine the amount of compensation needed for his care, and while £5.75 million would seem like a lot of money, it has been estimated his care over his lifetime will amount to £10 million.
"As a result of this settlement, we are glad to know what we have to work with, but this is not about our future - it’s about Aaron’s."
In 2005, Edward Faulks QC for Dr Maguire, confirmed at Manchester High Court that an agreement on a settlement had been reached but no admissions had been made.
Stockport Express, 27th May 2009