Ipswich Hospital is being sued by a former patient who claims a radiologist, previously found to have deficiencies in his care, failed to spot signs of her breast cancer in 2012. 

Dr Kong Fa Lan Keng Lun, also known as Dr Bill Lan, has been accused by an unnamed 46-year-old patient from Ipswich of failing to spot abnormalities in her breasts when she was first referred to him that were later diagnosed as cancerous. 

This case follows an earlier scandal concluded in 2007, when Dr Lun was found by the General Medical Council (GMC) to have provided negligent care to women at St Margaret’s Hospital in Epping, 6,000 scans from 2005 had to be reviewed. He continued to practice, with a number of conditions placed on him by the GMC.

"Thompsons Solicitors’ medical negligence specialists are experts in acting on behalf of clients suffering the consequences of missed opportunities to spot breast cancer or to deal with it quickly enough and we have too often seen the tragic consequences."

Linda Millband
national lead lawyer of Thompsons Solicitors’ clinical negligence team

In this most recent case, the Ipswich patient received a mammogram and ultrasound treatment in June 2012 after complaining of nipple discharge, as well as pain. Dr Lun concluded there was no abnormality in her breasts and that a small mass was likely to be a lymph node. However, 14 months later, she was urgently referred for more tests after developing severe pain and it was only then that Dr Lun requested a biopsy, which confirmed she had cancer. She went on to have a double mastectomy. 

An independent report into the latest case found Dr Lun’s care was far below the standard expected but the GMC concluded no further action was necessary. The woman is now suing Ipswich Hospital, claiming the 14-month delay in diagnosis has shortened her life expectancy – something the NHS trust refutes. 

Linda Millband, national lead lawyer of Thompsons Solicitors’ clinical negligence team, said: “Thompsons Solicitors’ medical negligence specialists are experts in acting on behalf of clients suffering the consequences of missed opportunities to spot breast cancer or to deal with it quickly enough and we have too often seen the tragic consequences. 

“Early diagnosis of breast cancer is crucial, as it gives patients the greatest chance of tackling the disease and getting on with their lives. The claims from the Ipswich patient suggest that this didn’t happen. We would encourage anyone who has been treated by Dr Lun or Bill Lan and is concerned about the care or diagnosis they received, to raise their concerns with their GP.”