Our Charity Partners – CESCI and the SIA
As a solicitor who specialises in spinal cord injury, quite a few of my clients suffer with cauda equina syndrome. Cauda equina is the name of all the nerves that come out of the bottom of the spinal cord. There are lots of them and they are responsible for sending messages from the brain to the lower limbs, bladder, bowel and genitals.
Damage to the cauda equina can lead to a whole host of problems including urinary and faecal incontinence, loss-of-power and pain in the legs as well as loss of sexual sensation and function.
Most of my cases stem from a negligent failure to act when symptoms suggest that the cauda equina is under threat – for example from the pressure of a slipped disc or a bleed at the base of the spinal cord. In most cases if treatment is quick, the worst injuries can be avoided. If the diagnosis is missed at an early stage the damage can be irreversible leading to catastrophic disability.
Whilst the condition is rare, it is prevalent and given the lack of education and understanding around it (both in the general population and the health service) can lead to the tell-tale signs or “red flags” being missed and significant injury, which could have been avoided.
Although my primary job is to pursue claims of negligence against those who have failed in providing appropriate care, it is also incredibly important to me, and a central part of the ethos of Bolt Burdon Kemp, to become integrated in the community of the people I represent. The knowledge and understanding I gain in turn helps me support my clients better through an incredibly difficult time in their lives – coming to terms with an altered existence and accepting the tough reality of pain, mobility issues and incontinence.
The BBK Spinal Team is partnered with a number of amazing organisations who provide an incredible amount of support to people who have CES. I am particularly proud of the relationships I have built with Nigel and Allison from CESCI and Harry Langley from the Spinal Injuries Association.
Allison and Harry have taken their own experiences and funneled them into supporting seriously injured people accept significantly altered circumstances and thrive. It is a privilege of my job to be able to partner with them on projects (and get to know them in the process).
Making a claim takes time and being able to direct my clients to such kind, knowledgeable and down-to-earth people can make a huge difference to them as their case progress (especially where the NHS refuse to engage in early rehabilitation or to make interim payments).
On top of this, we receive calls and enquiries from people with the condition who haven’t received negligent treatment and it is a privilege to be able to provide a small amount of help by recommending the life-saving services provided by the CESCI and the SIA.
In the meantime, take a look at their websites and here for further details of the work they do and the support they offer.