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Mr Watts' Story
“Thompsons did seem heavyweight right from the start.” Mrs Watts
“What happened to us is scarcely credible.
My husband, Ian, who is diabetic, went into hospital with an infection on the little toe of his left foot.
He finished up, after a series of failed treatments, having his left leg amputated below the knee.
In addition, a badly applied pressure stocking on his right leg led to Ian developing a new infection on his right foot and the doctors considered amputating that as well.
Ian was already severely depressed by what had happened to him and the thought of losing his remaining foot made him suicidal.
Fortunately a second opinion was sought and that led to saving Ian’s foot - after a 9 hour operation by a different surgeon.
We both became very angry about what had happened.
We were also distressed and at times exhausted by Ian’s new care needs at home.
These were made worse by the unsuitability of our actual home and by my having MS.
Eventually, we wondered if we might have a case to sue the NHS trust for clinical negligence.
The first solicitors we consulted thought we had a case but was honest enough to suggest that, although he was very keen to act for us, we needed a bigger hitter.
Thompsons did seem heavyweight right from the start.
They set about investigating what happened to Ian to test if we actually had a strong enough claim.
They sent us to see a medical expert in Leicester who very thoroughly went into what had happened to Ian and was clearly not happy.
Then we were sent to see a barrister in London.
Over the phone, in front of us and with us involved, these two discussed Ian’s case and decided we did have a claim and it all went ahead from there.
The whole process was quite a shock, such a roller coaster.
For example, we were visited by a hospital official who produced a report saying that Ian could walk to the end of our garden.
But it wasn’t true.
Thompsons, on the other hand, brought in an impressive array of experts to assist with our claim.
These people were specialists on care, prosthetics, physiotherapy, and even an expert on adapting our home with ramps and raised electrical sockets and other modifications.
I was glad we settled out of court but I don’t think Ian was – we wanted an apology from the hospital and didn’t get it.
I think Ian would have liked to say something about that in court.
And we are left to this day doubting the amputation was necessary at all.
Today our home is properly adapted – we’d been trying to adapt it ourselves before, helped by our sons-in-law.
Now it has been done professionally.
And Ian can now afford a far better prosthesis than the National Health one.
In fact, he’s getting one made by Thompsons' expert and will be able to wear it for much longer periods.”
Susan, Ian’s wife