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Was your stroke misdiagnosed, or have you experienced another form of stroke negligence? We're here to help

Strokes can happen to anyone, but if you or a loved one had a stroke that might have been avoided through a higher level of medical care, the situation can be even more distressing. 

You may be able to make a claim for stroke compensation if medical negligence meant that your stroke was missed or misdiagnosed. For example, if you went to your doctor or hospital after a TIA (‘mini stroke') but it was diagnosed as something else and you later had a more serious stroke, you may have a case for a stroke misdiagnosis claim.

Negligence may also be a factor if doctors knew that you were in a high-risk category for a stroke, but did not deliver a suitable level of preventative care. If you suffered a stroke in a case like this, you may be able to make a compensation claim.

With potentially expensive costs such as rehabilitation to find, compensation can ease some of the financial pressure for a family focused on rebuilding after a stroke. We're here to advise you on your suitability for compensation and match you with a specialist solicitor for further help with your claim. If you have questions or feel you might have a claim, contact us for free on  or request a call back.

How does a stroke misdiagnosis claim work?

If the stroke was in the past three years and medical negligence contributed to it, you may be able to claim compensation. There are some exceptions to this three-year limit however, such as if the effects of the stroke impact someone's ability to make a claim. 

Claiming on a no win no fee basis brings you no financial risk. There are no upfront charges and all of the costs are covered for you during the case. If you win, your contribution to these costs will simply be deducted from your compensation. You'll pay nothing at all if you lose, so long as you comply with the agreement with your solicitor and have the appropriate insurance in place, which your solicitor can arrange for you. 

You can also claim on behalf of someone else, for example if the stroke or another medical or mental health condition means they can't claim themselves.

If you have any questions or feel you might have a claim, contact us for free on or request a call back. We'll listen to what you've been through and let you know if we think you could make a claim. If you're eligible, we'll match you with specialist stroke solicitors who will support you throughout the process.


What is a stroke?

A stroke happens when there is a lack of blood supply to the brain. Cells in the brain die and parts of the brain are unable to function properly. This can happen to anyone, regardless of age or gender.

Stokes can happen for many reasons. A person's health and lifestyle can play a part, with high blood pressure, smoking, obesity, high cholesterol and stress all being factors. 

Although the results of a stroke can be devastating, if the stroke is spotted quickly and treatment begins soon, it is likely that the damage caused will be less severe. But the effects of an undiagnosed stroke can be much worse than would otherwise be the case. If a TIA (‘mini stroke') is undiagnosed and untreated for example, there is an increased risk of a more serious stroke.

If you or someone you know is suffering due to negligence in the diagnosis or treatment of a stroke, call us for free today on or fill in our secure online form and we'll offer free, independent and impartial advice. If we think you may be eligible for compensation, we'll connect you with one of our expert solicitors for further advice and help to get the compensation you deserve.


What are the different kinds of stroke?

There are three main types of stroke:

Transient ischaemic attack (TIA). Also known as a ‘mini stroke', a TIA happens when a clot blocks the blood supply to the brain. The clot quickly moves and the blood supply is restored, so the symptoms of a TIA might last for just a short time. 

Despite the name ‘mini stroke', a TIA can be a warning sign that someone is at risk of having a more serious stroke. This is why it's so important that everything possible is done to identify a TIA and put stroke prevention treatment in place as soon as possible.

Ischaemic stroke. In this type of stroke, there is an interruption in the blood supply to part of the brain. The most common cause is a blood clot in an artery leading to the brain, or a clot in a vessel within the brain itself. About 85% of strokes are ischaemic, according to the Stroke Association.

Haemorrhagic stroke. This is sometimes called a brain haemorrhage. The cause is bleeding in the brain, or outside of the brain itself but still within the skull. It happens when an artery  or blood vessel bursts in or on the brain. Another cause is a ruptured brain aneurysm, where there is a bulge in the wall of an artery.


What are the symptoms of a stroke?

You should call 999 as soon as you suspect that you or someone else is having a stroke - including a ‘mini stroke'. Experts have developed the ‘FAST' method for spotting a stroke: 

  • Face. Ask them to smile. Is their face drooping on one side?
  • Arms. Ask them to raise both arms. Does one arm move downwards?
  • Speech. Ask them to say something. Are they hard to understand?
  • Time. If you see any of these signs, even if they soon pass, call 999 straight away.

Other symptoms to look out for include weakness, numbness or an inability to move one side of the body, blurred or lost vision, and difficulty in understanding what people are saying. People may also show signs of memory loss, confusion, dizziness or a sudden and very severe headache.


How should a stroke typically be diagnosed?

As well as the ‘FAST' method, doctors will typically use more sophisticated methods to make a full  diagnosis. The NICE diagnosis guidelines for example recommend the use of the ‘ROSIER' diagnosis tool when someone comes to the emergency room with a suspected TIA.

Doctors will choose from a number of options when diagnosing a stroke:

  • Physical examination. Symptoms such as speech problems, weakness in the arm or leg down one side of the body, vision irregularities, headaches and dizziness are assessed. The patient's pulse and blood pressure may also be checked. Doctors will likely also see if the patient can swallow properly, as difficulty swallowing can be a sign of a stroke.
  • Blood tests. One or more blood tests may follow a stroke. These can include checks for abnormal cholesterol and blood sugar levels. 
  • Brain scans. CT and MRI scans can establish the presence and location of a blocked artery or burst blood vessel. The scans also help to assess the severity of the stroke.
  • Heart and blood vessel tests. These tests help doctors confirm the cause of the stroke, such as narrowing of the arteries. They include an ultrasound and echocardiogram.
  • Lumbar puncture. This shows if blood has leaked into the spinal fluid. This can help to determine if someone has had a haemorrhagic stroke.

Doctors are trained to spot signs of a stroke, but mistakes are made and an undiagnosed stroke can still happen. Stroke misdiagnosis claims can lead to compensation when there has been negligence with a person's diagnosis. In particular, compensation may be awarded where a GP or a hospital missed stroke symptoms of a TIA (‘mini stroke'), and therefore suitable preventative care wasn't delivered. 

If you or someone you know has had a stroke, and if you think there was a missed or delayed diagnosis of an earlier TIA, please talk to us on about whether you have a case for compensation. 

We'll listen to what you've been through and let you know if we think you could make a claim. If you're eligible, we'll match you with specialist stroke solicitors who can make your claim and support you through the process.


casper-nicholettos

Casper is one of our Legal Support Advisors at National Accident Helpline

I understand how traumatic strokes are and how dealing with a compensation claim can seem like a difficult burden. But compensation could make a noticeable difference to quality of life for the person affected.


We always take time to listen when someone chooses to trust us with their claim enquiry. When we collect information and assess stroke misdiagnosis claims we do so with care, patience and sensitivity.

Casper Nicholettos

Legal Support Advisor, National Accident Helpline

How are strokes treated?

People who have had a stroke may receive treatment at hospital, from their GP, and from a number of healthcare professionals specialising in stroke treatment. These include specialists working in a neurovascular unit or a specialist stroke unit. 

Treatment after a TIA (‘mini stroke')

A TIA can be a warning sign that you are at greater risk of having a more serious stroke - possibly within a few hours or days. This is why diagnosing a TIA and providing suitable preventative treatment is so important.

The patient.info website that's widely used by GPs advises doctors to: 

  • Immediately prescribe aspirin after a suspected TIA to reduce the likelihood of further blood clots. 
  • Refer anyone with a suspected TIA for a specialist assessment within 24 hours.
  • Give advice on lifestyle such as eating, drinking, weight control and exercise.
  • Consider treatment to lower blood pressure or blood cholesterol where appropriate.

Treatment after an ischaemic stroke

Doctors may inject thrombolysis medicine after an ischaemic stroke to dissolve a clot blocking the supply of blood to the brain. Other options include a thrombectomy to remove the clot, and a decompressive hemicraniectomy to reduce pressure on the brain. 

Medication such as aspirin and anticoagulants can reduce the likelihood of new clots developing, statins can be used to lower cholesterol levels, and medicine may also be used to lower blood pressure.

Treatment after a haemorrhagic stroke 

Treatment may involve emergency neurosurgery called a craniotomy to look for the cause of the bleed and repair any damage. Surgery may also be performed after a stroke to treat hydrocephalus, where fluid builds up in cavities in the brain. 

As with an ischaemic stroke, treatment for a haemorrhagic stroke might include medication to bring down high blood pressure. Pain killers can deal with a severe headache and nimodipine might be prescribed to help prevent further brain damage.  

Stroke rehabilitation

Whenever a stroke has affected functional skills such as walking and talking, rehabilitation may be recommended to help restore these skills. It's often a matter of learning to live with the effects of the stroke, but at the same time manage them as well as possible.

New treatments

Research into new kinds of stroke treatment includes trialling brain cooling that can reduce swelling and damage to the brain. The role ofnatural remedies is also being investigated and the BBC reported on the use of the herbal extract ginkgo bilboa to improve cognitive skills after an ischaemic stroke. 


What can happen if a stroke is not diagnosed and treated quickly?

If a GP or hospital missed stroke symptoms, or if treatment was delayed, there is the possibility of a worse outcome for the patient. That's why it's so important that medical professionals take steps to avoid cases of a missed stroke

After a TIA (‘mini stroke') for example, treatment should be given as soon as possible to minimise the chances of a more serious stroke. After ischaemic and haemorrhagic strokes, delays in treatment may worsen symptoms, including the extent of any disability, loss of functional skills or changes in behaviour.

The effects of a misdiagnosis or treatment delay can form part of stroke misdiagnosis claims. If you believe that misdiagnosis or other negligence has affected you or someone you know, please get in touch on . We can assess whether a compensation claim is possible and put you in touch with a specialist solicitor for further advice and support with your claim.


How often are strokes missed or misdiagnosed?

There is no clear data on how many stokes are missed. However, with more than 100,000 strokes in the UK each year, it is perhaps inevitable that sometimes a mistake is made in a GP surgery or hospital. Missed stroke events can happen, despite the extensive training that health professionals receive. 

Stroke lawyers are able to assess what happened in your case and see if you can make a claim. This might include looking at whether missing a TIA (‘mini stroke') meant that doctors who specialise in stroke medicine or other medical staff didn't carry out appropriate investigations.


What counts as medical negligence or malpractice?

Medical negligence in the UK is defined as a situation where the doctor or hospital does not act to a standard that you as a patient could reasonably expect from them. If a medical professional fails in their duty of care to you, it could count as medical negligence and lead to a stroke misdiagnosis compensation claim.

Has medical negligence such as stroke misdiagnosis happened to you or a loved one? Please call us free on  and a  member of our legally trained team will listen to what you've been through. If we think you could make a claim for stroke misdiagnosis compensation, we'll connect you with a specialist stroke solicitor for further advice and support.


How do you prove misdiagnosis of a stroke?

In medical negligence cases such as stroke misdiagnosis compensation claims, proving misdiagnosis is not always straightforward. That's why if you make a claim, one of our specialist medical negligence solicitors will look into your case. They may also use the services of medical experts to assess what happened in even more detail.

Claims may be possible if a GP or hospital missed stroke symptoms or incorrectly diagnosed another condition. This includes cases of a TIA (‘mini stroke') where procedures might not have been followed correctly.

Stroke compensation cases can be complex and specialist stroke lawyers with experience of assessing these claims will confirm whether you might get compensation. Call us on and we'll match you with specialist stroke solicitors who can advise and support you through the claims process.


Are there other grounds for a stroke negligence claim?

Misdiagnosis isn't the only situation where stroke settlements are possible. Some people are known to be at a higher than average risk of a stroke. Preventative care from a GP or stroke prevention unit can reduce the likelihood of a stroke, and a lack of this care could contribute to a stroke.

Preventative care might be appropriate in a number of situations:

  • Where a person has a condition that is known to increase the risk of having a stroke, such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes 
  • Certain heart problems, where medicine might be prescribed to reduce the risk of blood clots
  • Where patients are taking medication that raises the risk of a stroke, doctors should monitor them closely

Can I make a stroke misdiagnosis compensation claim?

Stroke misdiagnosis is a form of medical negligence open to interpretation and can be a complicated area of law. That's why specialist medical negligence solicitors should assess your case. 

The essential thing to consider is this: are you suffering as a result of stroke misdiagnosis, or another form of stroke negligence? If you are suffering, and you believe this is due to negligence, talk to us today about your situation. 

Our legally trained advisors are here to help you understand whether you can make a claim. We'll listen to your experience and let you know if you may be eligible, and we'll never rush or pressure you to take things further. Please speak to us free and confidentially on  - we're here to help.

If you decide you'd like to proceed, we'll connect you with one of our specialist stroke lawyers. They have experience of assessing missed stroke claims and will confirm whether you could get some compensation.


Can I make a claim on behalf of a family member?

Yes, you can make a stroke misdiagnosis claim on behalf of someone who cannot make the claim themselves due to the after-effects or the stroke. You may also need to act for someone who is too young, doesn't speak the same language, or suffers from dementia, severe autism or another condition affecting their ability to be involved in the claim process. 

You would act as their ‘litigation friend'; somebody close to the person who has been affected, such as a parent, partner or friend. We know that it may feel like a big responsibility to be a litigation friend. That's why we are here to explain everything to you simply and to make the process straightforward. You can then focus on being there for the person affected by stroke misdiagnosis.

We also understand that you may be reading this because you have lost a loved one as a result of a stroke. If medical negligence was a factor, you may be able to make a claim for compensation.


How much compensation could I receive through a stroke malpractice settlement?

Letting a solicitor investigate what has happened is the best way for you to find out what level of stroke malpractice settlement might be possible for your case. The amount of compensation will depend on many factors such as the level of brain damage, disability, loss of functional skills, behavioural changes and so on . 

Compensation might be paid for one or both of these categories: 

  • General damages cover pain, suffering and ‘loss of amenity', which means the impact on your ability to do things you used to do, such as everyday tasks and hobbies. 
  • Special damages are the financial losses you've experienced as a direct result of the negligence or malpractice and are in addition to general damages. 

The Judicial College is the government department in the Ministry of Justice responsible for setting the guideline general damages amounts for all personal injury types. Included are the types of harm that can be caused by strokes, including these guide amounts for brain damage:

InjuryInjury typeCompensation range
‘Moderate' brain damageCases in which concentration and memory are affected, the ability to work is reduced, where there is a small risk of epilepsy, and any dependence on others is very limited.£40,410 to £85,150
‘Moderately severe' brain damageThe injured person will be very seriously disabled. There will be substantial dependence on others and a need for constant professional and other care. Disabilities may be physical, for example, limb paralysis, or cognitive, with marked impairment of intellect and personality.£205,580 to £264,650

 

To find out whether you or someone you know is eligible for compensation, contact us for free, impartial advice on  or fill in our secure online form to arrange a call back at a time that suits you. 

We'll never rush or pressure you into making a claim. We're here to help you understand whether you could make a claim and to answer any questions.

And remember, we'll also usually be able to make your claim on a no win no fee basis, which means you won't pay any solicitors' fees if your claim isn't successful. 


How could compensation help me or my family?

A stroke can have a mix of physical and emotional consequences. Often there will also be a financial impact, especially if you are unable to work following the stroke.

If the misdiagnosis was due to medical negligence, you may be able to get stroke compensation to help with your recovery or adjustment to living with the after-effects of the stroke.

Compensation from stroke settlements might help people manage their condition in a number of ways:

  • Private care. Many people who survive a stroke need help with daily living such as eating, washing and dressing. 
  • Rehabilitation. NHS rehabilitation may only be available for a fixed time after the stroke. If someone can benefit from longer term rehabilitation, compensation can help make that possible. 
  • Adapting your home. Modifications to your home might help you perform daily tasks better. These can include specialist beds and chairs, a shower with easy access and kitchen modifications.   
  • Counselling or therapy. Depression and behaviour change are common after a stroke. Specialist psychological help could address these issues, enabling someone to participate better in other areas of their treatment. 
  • Loss of earnings. Compensation can cover loss of earnings, both now and for the future. Stroke settlements can also help family members who have had to take time off to help with their loved one's care.

More customer stories

How long do I have to make a missed stroke diagnosis claim?

To qualify for making a stroke misdiagnosis claim, you must have suffered the effects of medical negligence within the last three years. The negligence involved must also have been all or partially the fault of a medical professional.

  • If you were 18 or over when the event occurred, you have three years to make a claim from the event or when you became aware of it. 
  • If you were under 18 at the time and no claim was made, you have three years from your 18th until your 21st birthday to claim.

There are exceptions to the three-year limitation, for instance if the victim experienced such severe side-effects they can't make the claim themselves. This also applies if they lack the psychological capability to do so, either as a result of the missed stroke or a pre-existing disability.

If you've got any questions about making a no win no fee claim, contact us for free and impartial advice on . We'll listen to what you've been through and let you know if we think you could make a no win no fee claim

Alternatively, try our eligibility checker which asks some simple questions about what happened and we'll let you know whether we think you may have grounds to make a claim for stroke misdiagnosis compensation.


How long will my compensation claim take?

Every claim we handle is different and that makes it  difficult to estimate  how long a specific stroke misdiagnosis claim might take. Cases where fault is clear and straightforward may settle sooner than others. But as claims for stroke misdiagnosis compensation are a type of medical negligence claim that tend to be complex, the process can take longer. 

With more complex stroke settlements, it may be possible to make compensation payments in stages. This could help with ongoing costs such as support from a care worker, rehabilitation sessions and making up for loss of earnings. 

You can be rest assured that your solicitors will stay in touch with you throughout the stroke claims process so that you'll always know how things are progressing.


Will I need to go to court?

It's unlikely that you will need to go to court, as most claims made with us are settled without a court hearing. Even if a court date is set, your claim might still be settled before the date comes up.

If your case does go to court, you have the reassurance that the solicitors looking after your claim will guide you through each step of the way. They will take you through the preparation process, and negotiate on your behalf throughout the court hearing itself. 

Although it might seem worrying, a court hearing can be very positive. Your solicitor will only suggest it if they think it's the best way to make sure you get the compensation you need.


Can I make a no win no fee stroke malpractice compensation claim?

Yes, and at National Accident Helpline we specialise in no win no fee claims as they enable you to claim with no financial risk. Making a no win no fee stroke misdiagnosis compensationclaim means you have nothing to pay if you don't win your case.

Once your lawyer takes on your case there are no upfront costs or hidden charges. If you don't win your claim, all your costs are covered - so you can be reassured that you won't be out of pocket.

This is because in most cases  your costs will be funded through an ‘After the Event' (ATE) insurance policy that your stroke lawyer will help you put in place. This type of policy covers costs such as medical reports, court fees and barristers' fees. You won't even have to pay the ATE policy fee if you lose your case.

Of course, we hope that you will win your case. If you do, the other side will usually be required to contribute towards your legal costs and expenses, depending on the claim type and value. If their contribution doesn't cover everything, any remaining costs may be deducted from your compensation. This deduction may include any fixed fees that aren't covered by the other side's contribution, a ‘success fee' to your solicitor for winning your claim, and the ATE insurance policy fee.

Your solicitor will explain these costs at the outset of your claim. You'll also have the reassurance that any costs will be capped at a level also discussed upfront with you.

In summary then, you'll pay nothing if you lose your stroke claim, and you'll only pay if you win - at a level explained at the outset. No win, no fee, no surprises. It's as simple as that.


How do I start my claim with National Accident Helpline?

You could be entitled to compensation if you have experienced a case of stroke misdiagnosis, and if medical professionals may have been negligent. Call our team of legally-trained advisors on  or start a claim online

If we assess that you may have a case for a claim, and if you decide to take things further, we'll put you in touch with one of our law firms specialising in medical negligence.



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Frequently asked questions...

Simply put, medical negligence is where a medical professional or medical institution like a hospital harms a patient by act or omission in the course of treatment or surgical procedure. It also includes things like medical misdiagnosis where a wrongly-identified condition or one missed entirely harms the patient.

Let’s look at the health service. NHS Resolution is the body that oversees medical negligence claims against the NHS. Their figures show that there were 15,655 claims settled in 2018/19 and that damages were awarded on 8,712 occasions – that’s in almost 56% of cases.

Medicine is complex and so are claims made for negligence: if you think you’ve been affected, then come and talk to us. You’ll be able to chat through your circumstances with one of our expert legal support advisors - and we’ll give you the options you need to make an informed decision about what to do next.

Legal aid was a method of covering the cost of going to court and getting a fair hearing. In 2000, legal aid was made unavailable for personal injury cases, and instead no win no fee or conditional fee agreements were introduced.

All of our solicitors can help you to make your claim on a no win no fee basis, which means that if your case isn’t successful you won’t pay a penny.

If your case is successful, you’ll pay a fee to your solicitor as a percentage of the amount you receive, and this percentage will have been agreed before starting your claim.

Find out more about legal aid and no win no fee here.