An introduction to Ian Paterson

Ian Paterson worked at a number of different NHS hospitals and private clinics throughout the Midlands area as a breast surgeon. He treated thousands of patients referred to him from 1994 onwards, who had found lumps in their breasts and were concerned about breast cancer.

Paterson put his patients' lives at risk by using a controversial technique not approved by the Hospital Trust.


Your name has been a constant across the years throughout the Paterson case and I just wanted to say a big thank you for all that you have done to give support. I have really appreciated it.

Thompsons' medical negligence client


New funds to be made available to victims

A new fund will be set up in 2021 to allow thousands of additional former patients of the surgeon to submit compensation claims. 

Previously, a sum of £37 million was placed into the Paterson Trust, which was launched following Thompsons' successful litigation against Paterson in 2017. The fund covered compensation claims of the 700 former patients whose cases were managed by the Trust.

Thompsons acted on behalf of 650 of those patients and our clinical negligence solicitors are the leading experts in Paterson cases. By using Thompsons Solicitors, patients who have received a recall letter from Spire will avoid additional legal fees. Clients of other law firms will need to pay fees when making a claim.


What did Ian Paterson do wrong?

Two main issues with Paterson's work have come to light so far and are detailed below. If you were treated by Paterson and the circumstances of your case are not mentioned below, we may still be able to help you. You can contact us for expert and confidential legal advice.


Cleavage sparing mastectomies

While working at Heartlands Hospital, Solihull Hospital, Good Hope Hospital, Spire Hospital Parkway and Spire Hospital Little Aston, Paterson performed 'cleavage sparing' mastectomies on breast cancer patients. The technique involved leaving tissue around the cleavage area for cosmetic reasons, but went against national guidelines which state that no excess tissue should be left behind as this could lead to a return of the cancer.

He did not inform his patients that he was doing anything other than following usual procedures and they had no idea that they were at an increased risk of their cancer returning.

Many of the people operated on by Paterson using this controversial technique have had to undergo further surgery to remove the excess tissue and unfortunately some have had their cancer return.


Unnecessary surgery

While working on a private basis at The Spire Hospital, Paterson may have performed many unnecessary operations which subjected patients to general anaesthetics and left scarring.

He would examine lumps, sometimes carrying out ultrasounds and mammograms, and then advise patients that they had pre-cancerous lumps which needed to be removed.

However, the lumps were often totally benign and harmless and should have been investigated with a simple biopsy. Some people underwent multiple unnecessary operations.


Justice for victims of Ian Paterson

We believe private healthcare providers should be held to the same standards and obligations of transparency, safety and accountability as the NHS. Through our Patients Before Profits: Justice for Victims of Ian Paterson campaign we want to guarantee that patients are, at all times, put before profit.

Patients Before Profits: Justice for Victims of Ian Paterson