A Dorset builder has secured compensation after doctors initially failed to diagnose a wrist fracture that left him out of work for 18 months and needing surgery.

Colin Thomas, 59, from Weymouth, hurt his wrist when he fell playing badminton.

His GP referred him to the local hospital for an x-ray, which he had on 15 April 2014, but it failed to produce a diagnosis and he continued working for several weeks in substantial pain. It was so bad that, at one point, Colin’s hand turned blue.

"Thompsons Solicitors was different, its specialists listened to me and explained in layman’s terms what I needed to do if I wanted to start a claim."

Colin Thomas, our client

When his symptoms persisted, Mr Thomas made himself another appointment, which took place on 3 June. However, it wasn’t until 16 June, at a third appointment, that he was diagnosed with a scaphoid fracture

The delayed diagnosis meant Colin had no choice but to have surgery, instead of less invasive treatment, which could have been possible and have left him with minimal residual pain if his condition had been picked up sooner. For the following 18 months, the self-employed builder had to pay for labourers to do his work. He continues to suffer stiffness, pain and loss of grip.

“I feel like my injury wasn’t taken seriously until it was too late,” Colin said. “I was told I could keep working and I assumed the doctors were right even though I was in near constant pain. To find out I had been doing this for weeks without ever knowing I had a scaphoid fracture was so frustrating.

“Because of the delay, I have spent the last few years battling an injury that could have been far less severe if medical staff had spotted it sooner.”

He turned to Thompsons Solicitors’ medical negligence specialists for support with a compensation claim. They successfully argued that, had he been referred to a fracture clinic after his initial x-ray, the injury would have likely been spotted and he would not have needed surgery.

"Starting a compensation claim can be a daunting process for anyone, so we were pleased to use our years of experience to make sure Colin was fairly compensated for the trauma he went through, which could all have been avoided if his injury was identified sooner."

Madeleine Pinschof of Thompsons Solicitors

“I turned to a few other law firms but they weren’t interested in my claim,” Colin said. “Thompsons Solicitors was different, its specialists listened to me and explained in layman’s terms what I needed to do if I wanted to start a claim. I would never have had the confidence to do it on my own. I cannot thank Thompsons enough.”

Madeleine Pinschof, at Thompsons Solicitors, added: “Scaphoid fractures do not always appear in x-rays, so Colin should have been advised to have additional check-ups to discover the cause of his discomfort, especially considering how he fell onto his wrist. This didn’t happen and the result was avoidable surgery and ongoing pain.

“Starting a compensation claim can be a daunting process for anyone, so we were pleased to use our years of experience to make sure Colin was fairly compensated for the trauma he went through, which could all have been avoided if his injury was identified sooner.”