Hearing Loss Misdiagnosis
Deafness or partial deafness/hearing loss can be life-altering, and in a situation where hearing loss has been caused by medical negligence, you may be entitled to compensation.
What is audiology negligence?
Audiology negligence or missed diagnosis by an audiologist may result in long-term medical issues or some cases, deafness. Paediatric Audiology in Ireland has been the focus of reviews in recent years, particularly concerning a missed diagnosis of hearing loss issues, and Coleman Legal LLP has been engaged by families whose children have suffered medical issues as a result of substandard or negligence audiology hearing tests for these children. If your child has suffered hearing loss as the result of missed diagnosis or medical negligence, you can discuss your situation with one of our medical negligence solicitors in confidence.
The HSE National Universal Newborn Hearing Screening Programme was implemented to ensure that newborn babies undergo a hearing loss screening within one month of their birth. Furthermore, its objective is to ensure that diagnostic audiology assessments are carried out on each child before the attainment of three months, and that audiological services and early intervention services are made available to babies in need of treatment before the attainment of 6 months of age. This practice aligns with international standards and supports the contention that early detection is the most effective solution to hearing impairment amongst children.
Have you been affected as a result of medical negligence?
- Our team of medical negligence solicitors has over 30 years of collective experience handling cases for those who have suffered due to medical misdiagnosis or medical negligence.
- We are accredited as medical negligence specialists by Action against Medical Accidents (AvMA) and the Law Society of Ireland.
- AvMA, a nonprofit dedicated to patient safety and justice, has given Coleman Legal its seal of approval. On their website, they provide helpful advice on choosing a specialised solicitor for your medical negligence claim, which may assist you in making your decision.
Results of misdiagnosis of hearing loss in children
The result of a misdiagnosis of hearing loss, and/or delay in diagnosis can cause significant developmental issues for a child for the period during which they are untreated. Common issues include, but are not limited to, the following;
- Delay in vocabulary development;
- Delay in comprehension or sentence structure;
- Speech impairment;
- Poor academic achievement;
- Social functioning- isolation, anxiety, difficulty interacting with others and poor self-concept.
Hearing aids, cochlear implants, speech therapy and assistive listening devices are commonly used to treat and alleviate hearing impairment.Children who have gone undiagnosed for some time may require additional speech therapy, educational assistance and behavioural therapy in order to assist their growth and development in later years.
Hearing aids require replacement every 4-6 years on average, while speech therapy and behavioural therapy, together with educational assistance may prove to be an ongoing expense for an indeterminate amount of time into the future.
Types of hearing loss
- Conductive Hearing Loss
- Sensorineural Hearing Loss
- Mixed Hearing Loss
Conduction heating loss
Conductive Hearing Loss happens when sounds cannot pass through the outer and middle ear. This type of hearing loss can usually be fixed by medication or surgery.
Potential causes of conductive hearing loss
- Fluid in your middle ear from colds or allergies.
- Ear infections
- Blocked Fluid via the Eustachian tube, which connects your middle ear and your nose.
- Hole in your eardrum
- Earwax stuck in the ear canal.
- An object stuck in your outer ear, e.g. a pebble or small bead.
- Deformation of the outer or middle ear.
Sensorineural hearing loss
Sensorineural hearing loss occurs after inner ear damage and is the most common type of permanent hearing loss or damage.
Potential Causes of Sensorineural Hearing Loss:
- A blow to the head
- Deformation of the inner ear
- Being subjected to loud noises or explosions
- Ototoxic Medicines* (medication that can damage the ear, resulting in hearing loss, tinnitus, or vertigo (loss of balance/dizziness).
Mixed hearing loss
In some situations, conductive hearing loss happens at the same time as sensorineural hearing loss (SNHL). This means that there may be damage or injury to the outer or middle ear and in the inner ear or nerve pathway to the brain. Anything that causes conductive hearing loss or SNHL can result in mixed hearing loss. The two together may make your hearing worse than it would be with only one type of hearing loss.
The claim process
1. Consult our medical negligence solicitor
It is advisable for you to speak to an experienced team of Medical Negligence Solicitors as soon as possible if you believe that you were not provided with an adequate or appropriate level of medical care, which resulted in you sustaining an injury or illness.
2. We obtain your medical records
After the consultation with your medical negligence solicitor, he/she will request access to your medical records and engage an independent medical expert to assess your records. The purpose of engaging an independent expert is to establish whether there was any negligence on the part of the medical professional.
3. The medical negligence litigation process
Where the independent medical expert is of the professional opinion that medical negligence did occur, upon your instructions, your solicitor will commence the process of issuing legal proceedings in Court against the medical professional and/or hospital.
Statute of Limitation
The legal time limit to make a medical negligence claim is two years from the date of injury or date of knowledge that the injury or illness resulted from medical negligence. For children/minors, the time limit expires two years after their 18th birthday.
You may contact a solicitor to discuss your case to advise of the Statute of Limitations applicable to your case.
- Have you had a surgical procedure that did not turn out as it should?
- Have you been left in pain, or do you continue to suffer from physical discomfort or physical scarring?
- Have you been misdiagnosed or had a delayed diagnosis of cancer or another serious illness affecting your health?
Any injury suffered during a medical procedure, whether it is physical or psychological, may have long-term effects on the victim and their families. Our medical negligence solicitors have assisted many clients in recovering maximum damages, and we believe in putting the needs of our clients first.
Coleman Legal LLP
84 Talbot Street, Dublin 1
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