A former horticulture teacher for children with special needs has secured £170,000 in compensation after developing Regional Pain Syndrome following negligent replacement knee surgery. 

In 2011, the 55-year-old had the surgery at the University Hospital of North Staffordshire NHS Trust. A consultant should have carried out the procedure, but unknown to him at the time, it was actually performed by a trainee registrar who failed to align the prosthesis correctly.

Still in pain six months after the operation, he visited the hospital for answers. 


“I asked the doctor why I was still in pain and he more or less admitted there and then a mistake had been made."

Thompsons Solicitors' medical negligence client

“I asked the doctor why I was still in pain and he more or less admitted there and then a mistake had been made,” he explained.

It was after this conversation that the former teacher contacted Thompsons Solicitors to investigate a claim for medical negligence.

Thompsons Solicitors negotiated for him to have revision surgery on a private basis and secured interim payments for him to ease the financial pressure, until the medical prognosis was certain.

He had the revision surgery in 2014 to realign the prosthesis and relieve his pain. However, despite a successful realignment, it was confirmed that he had developed Regional Pain Syndrome, a complex condition in which a person experiences persistent and debilitating pain.

After the second procedure, he didn’t return to work and 15 months later his employment was terminated on the grounds of ill health.

He added: “My job meant the world to me. I always enjoyed it, many people aren’t quite as fortunate, so it’s been difficult to accept that I can’t teach but the pain in my knee makes everything so much harder. Getting showered and dressed is difficult, let alone the physical work that is needed to support children with special needs. I’ve also enjoyed gardening since I was a teenager, so not only have I lost my career but a hobby of a lifetime.” 

Clair Wilson, of Thompsons Solicitors, said: “A patient puts all of their trust in a surgeon - their lives are in their hands. If the surgery had been performed correctly the first time, he could be living a completely different life - his old life - pain free.

“Medical negligence cases such as these are often complex, but we fought hard to ensure that he secured the maximum compensation to reflect his pain and suffering and loss of future earnings.”