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Oakwood Solicitors

Liver Cancer

Have you been misdiagnosed
by a medical professional?

  • Over 24 years of combined experience
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  • No upfront cost or hidden charges
  • Straight-talking and friendly advisors
  • Free consultation and claim assessment
  • Support and advice whenever you need it

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Testimonials

Polite and friendly.

I just want to say how grateful I am for Carol to be helping me and fighting by my side. She was really polite and friendly which made me feel very at ease and very comfortable to go ahead with this claim. Thank you so much.

- Jack David

Top class service.

Absolutely top class service with my late mother’s hospital negligence claim. Professional sympathetic staff who so far have kept me in the picture and continued to update me from day one. Highly recommended!

- Lisa Chambers

Smooth and efficient.

Any dealings I have had so far have been very smooth & the staff are very efficient. They have explained things to me in a step by step way for easy understanding. They have also always called back when they have said they would which is really good.

- Susan Russell

Kind and compassionate.

Sara was very kind and compassionate towards me, she really understood the pain I'm going through during this difficult time of my life. And for that I thank you.

- Scott Reid

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The Experts in Liver Cancer Claims

Oakwood Solicitors Ltd’s specialist Medical Negligence department has an in-house team of solicitors and legal professionals dedicated solely to this area of law.

With over 24 years of combined experience, we are dedicated to assisting clients who have suffered physically, mentally, and financially as a result of negligent medical treatment. The specialist team pursues an array of medical negligence claims ranging from prescription errors and misdiagnosis to complex birthing injury and spinal claims and everything else in between.

How do I make a claim?

If you feel that there has been a delay in your diagnosis or implementing treatment as a result of the actions of a medical professional, then you may be entitled to compensation. The team at Oakwood Solicitors Ltd will be able to give you free advice on the prospects of your case and whether you would be eligible to make a claim.

You have three years from the date you ought to have been aware that your diagnosis should have been made sooner or from the date you ought to have been aware that treatment should have been different, to bring about a claim – so do not delay.

How long will my case take to run?

Given the complexities involved in pursuing clinical negligence claims, they can often take 18-24 months to conclude and longer if court proceedings have to be issued.

Our investigations start by obtaining all relevant records and protocols before approaching independent medical experts for their opinion.  We will provide you with regular updates on the progress of your case to ensure that you are kept up to speed.

How much is my claim worth?

It is often difficult to value clinical negligence claims at their outset, given the complexities involved. However, we will pursue two forms of compensation for you:

  • Firstly – we will pursue compensation known as general damages. This is an award of money for the pain and suffering you have endured as a result of the negligence.
  • Secondly – we will pursue compensation known as special damages. This is an award of money for all of your out-of-pocket expenses, such as travel expenses, medication costs, loss of earnings, treatment costs both past and future. This list is not exhaustive and is very case-specific.
General Damages icon

Firstly – we will pursue compensation known as general damages. This is an award of money for the pain and suffering you have endured as a result of the negligence.

Special Damages Icon

Secondly – we will pursue compensation known as special damages. This is an award of money for all of your out-of-pocket expenses, such as travel expenses, medication costs, loss of earnings, treatment costs both past and future. This list is not exhaustive and is very case-specific.

Why use Oakwood Solicitors Ltd to make your clinical negligence case?

We have a dedicated team of solicitors and paralegals who have many years’ experience between them in running cases of this nature. They are highly trained to deal with all aspects of clinical negligence.

We want to ensure that clients are not overwhelmed by legal jargon, medical terms that they don’t understand and to allow the claims procedure to be as transparent as possible.

How is my case funded?

The majority of clinical negligence cases are funded by a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA), more commonly known as a ‘no-win, no-fee’ agreement. This means that there will be nothing to pay upfront and nothing to pay if the claim has been lost. If you are successful in your claim, a deduction of 25% of damages will be taken to cover the success fee and the shortfall in legal fees.

It may also be the case that an After The Event (ATE) insurance policy will be obtained to cover the costs of expensive medical reports and investigations. If an ATE insurance policy has to be obtained the cost of the same will be discussed with you at the appropriate point. The cost of the ATE insurance policy is again taken from your damages and only payable if you are successful with your claim.

About Liver Cancer

What is liver cancer?

Liver cancer starts in the cells of the liver. The liver’s main function is to produce bile that then breaks down fats, vitamins, and other nutrients as well as alcohol, medications, and toxins.

Liver cancer is broken down into two main types:

Primary liver cancer 

it is uncommon but a serious type of cancer. It often starts as a lump in the liver but multiple lumps can form. Various primary cancers can form:

  • Hepatocellular carcinoma – This accounts for 75% of all cancers. It grows in the hepatocytes of the liver and occurs more often in people with severe liver damage from alcohol abuse.
  • Cholangiocarcinoma – This is also known as bile duct cancer. The bile ducts are responsible for taking bile from the gallbladder to the liver to aid digestion. It makes up 10-20% of liver cancers.
  • Intrahepatic bile cancer – This is when the cancer starts in the bile duct.
  • Extrahepatic bile duct cancer – This is when cancer starts in the ducts outside of the liver.
  • Liver Angiosarcoma – It begins in the blood vessels of the liver. It is relatively slow and therefore tends to be diagnosed later.
  • Hepatoblastoma – This is a very rare type of cancer and is found in children under the age of 3. If the cancer is diagnosed quickly then the survival rate is over 90%.
  • Secondary liver cancer – This is where the cancer develops in another organ and then spreads to the liver.

What are the symptoms of liver cancer?

There are a variety of symptoms of liver cancer, such as:

  • Weight loss
  • Nausea
  • Feeling full after eating
  • Itchy skin
  • Lethargy
  • Loss of appetite
  • Jaundice of the skin and whites of the eyes
  • Bruising or bleeding easily
  • Swelling in the middle region
  • White stools

Who is affected?

Liver Cancer Graphic

 

There are over 5,500 new cases each year

Liver Cancer Graphic

 

It is more common in men

Liver Cancer Graphic

 

It affects people over the age of 65 and is rare under the age of 45

What are the causes?

There are certain factors that increase the risk of getting liver cancer:

  • Being over 50 years of age.
  • Hepatitis B or C infection – This can damage the liver and make a person more prone to liver cancer. It can be passed during childbirth or through bodily fluids of an infected person.
  • Alcohol – Prolonged alcohol consumption over many years.
  • Fatty Liver – Non-alcoholic related fatty liver disease carries and increased chance of developing liver cancer. 25% of people with non-alcoholic related fatty liver with go on to develop cancer.
  • Cirrhosis – This is where the liver is damaged and produced scar tissue which then does not work to it full ability. This then can lead to liver cancer.
  • Diabetes and obesity – This can cause liver issues.
  • Anabolic steroids – Usage over a period of time.
  • Haemochromatosis– A genetic disorder where iron levels build up.
  • Primary biliary cirrhosis– A long-term liver disease in which the bile ducts in the liver become damaged.

Diagnosis and Treatments

How is it diagnosed?

The first step is to visit your GP for further tests. If there is a suspicion about liver cancer then you would be referred to a specialist.

Certain groups may be considered high risk and therefore have to have regular screening. It usually happens every 6 months and would involve:

  • Ultrasound scans
  • Blood tests – to test for a protein called AFP or Alphafetoprotein.

Other tests may include:

  • CT scans – X rays would be taken of the liver
  • MRI Scans – to build up a picture of the liver
  • Biopsy – a needle attached to a camera is inserted into the liver and a small sample is removed. It is then tested for cancer cells
  • Laparoscopy – a camera is inserted into the abdomen to examine the liver

After these tests are done, the patient will be advised of what stage of the cancer they are at:

  • Stage 0 – Tumour is less than 2cm in diameter.
  • Stage A – Tumour is less than 5cm, or two or three are there at less than 3cm.
  • Stage B – Multiple tumours but the person is well and their liver is unaffected.
  • Stage C – Cancer has started to spread to the main blood vessel of the liver.
  • Stage D – The liver has lost most of its functioning abilities.

How is liver cancer treated?

Treatment depends on the stage of the condition. It usually involves surgery or medication, or both.

If the cancer is at Stage A, then a complete cure may be possible:

  • Remove the section of the liver.
  • Liver transplant – To remove and replace the existing liver.
  • Use microwave, radiofrequency or RFA to kill the cancer cells.

There are potential problems following surgery for liver cancer, for example:

  • Bleeding
  • Bile leakage
  • Kidney issues
  • Urine infections
  • Blood clots
  • Liver failure.

If the cancer is at stage B or C then a cure is not always possible, but chemotherapy can slow down the progress of the cancer. If the cancer is at stage D when diagnosed then palliative care is more likely.

Charities and Useful Websites

Useful resources

  • British Liver Trust (BLT) – Funded by donations, BLT support patients and families and campaign to improve awareness of the risks to the liver and fund research in to the causes and treatments of liver disease.
  • Guts UK – Dedicated to fighting all digestive diseases, they aim for the world to understand these diseases better and to improve treatment and support for everyone affected by digestive diseases, such as liver cancer.

What should you do if you think you have a claim?

If you believe or feel you have a claim, contact us for a free initial consultation regarding your options.

carol cook
Carol Cook — Head of Department

Carol joined Oakwood Solicitors in May 2017 to lead the Medical Negligence department. She handles a wide range of Clinical and Dental Negligence claims and has a specialist interest in Birth Injuries. Carol has years of experience in handling complex clinical and Dental Negligence claims securing substantial amounts of damages for her clients. Carol studied her law degree (LLB honours) at Salford University.

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