Failure to Diagnose Compartment Syndrome

Evaluating the facts in a compartment syndrome case

Initially, compartment syndrome can be difficult to diagnose, because there are many other possibilities for pain. Failure to diagnose compartment syndrome, or an extremely delayed diagnosis, can lead to permanent foot drop, loss of limb or even death. A doctor needs to act in a timely manner to rule out other causes of pain and then test for compartment syndrome.

Among the symptoms of compartment syndrome are:

  • Swelling and pressure in an enclosed area of the leg or arm becomes great.
  • Swelling is usually caused by an injury that impedes the flow of blood.
  • The pressure causes capillaries to collapse, cutting off the blood supply.
  • The pain is more severe than that of a fracture or sprain.
  • The severe pain gets worse over time.
  • There is sometimes a tingling or burning sensation.

Compartment syndrome pressure can be measured and surgery can resolve the problem — unless treatment is delayed and causes muscle and nerve damage. A medical malpractice lawyer with knowledge of compartment syndrome can evaluate the medical records with the help of medical experts and determine if there was a misdiagnosis or delayed diagnosis.

Discuss your compartment syndrome concerns with an attorney.

Extreme pain deserves appropriate concern and a timely diagnosis and action. If you have questions about compartment syndrome and possible physician negligence, call 612.587.2925 or send an email for a free consultation. Our law firm represents clients in Minnesota and Wisconsin.