9. Name of Case: Ashmead Johan v The South West Regional Health Authority
HC 2523/2006

Type of Medical Negligence: Hospital Error
Date of Judgment:                   
 31st March, 2010
Judge Presiding:                         
The Honourable Mr. Justice R. Boodoosingh


The Claimant was taken to the Point Fortin Area Hospital on 26th August 2002 and was transferred to the San Fernando General Hospital where he remained some days and was diagnosed with a left foot drop. The Claimant claimed that due to injections being negligently administered by an agent of the defendant, this caused trauma to the sciatic nerve and this caused the left foot drop to occur.
The main issue therefore was whether on a balance of probabilities, the Claimant’s left foot drop was caused by any trauma to the sciatic nerve by the negligent administering of an injection or injections.

On a balance of probabilities, it could not be said that the claimant made a link between the injection(s) given and his foot drop condition. While evidence was given that it was possible for trauma to the sciatic nerve to cause foot drop, there was no evidence in this case to suggest that there was in fact trauma to the sciatic nerve caused by the injection.
Moreover, given the evidence of his high level of alcohol consumption, no reliance could be placed in the claimant’s evidence regarding what caused the leg drop since his alcohol abuse could more than likely be the cause of his foot drop condition.

Additionally, although the Claimant gave evidence of shock treatment being administeredBreast-Lift-Surgery to him at the San Fernando General Hospital, this was not substantiated by the medical records or any other medical evidence tendered by the Claimant.

The claim was dismissed. The Claimant paid the defendant’s costs in the sum of $33, 109.00.


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