Dr. David Thomas

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Barrister

Having spent 14 years in clinical medicine, including 3 years as a consultant cardiologist, I bring expert medical insight to my exclusively clinical negligence practice, and am frequently instructed by national firms in this area.

I have a clear understanding of the issues of anatomy, physiology and pathology that can result from an alleged negligently performed procedure or negligent treatment. With an emphasis on claimant work, I undertake work in a wide range of medical specialties including surgery, obstetrics, gynaecology and orthopaedics, and sub-specialties such as cardiology and cardiac surgery. I have a developed a particular interest in cases involving corrective laser eye surgery, and undertake cases in relation to issues of consent.

I regularly appear at Inquests on behalf of relatives of those who have died, where there may be a potential claim in clinical negligence.

I am happy to be involved from an early stage in the process of litigation of a proposed claim, and I frequently advise on the instruction of appropriate experts. I am willing to receive instructions electronically as well as on paper.

Notable Cases

Finnie v South Devon Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust [2014] EWHC 4333 (QB)

The claimant had undergone an operation for which there was no clinical indication or need. Following surgery for mega-rectum the bowel anastomosis broke down resulting in significant pelvic sepsis with damage to the female reproductive organs. The claimant required 27 further abdominal operations to attempt to correct the complications of the negligent surgery. The defendant denied breach of duty until two weeks before trial, and only then making limited admissions. At trial the defendant then made further admissions and admitted causation.

The claimant was ultimately awarded £705,000 (including pension loss).

B v P, C & Yeovil Hospitals NHS Trust

Claimant suffered loss of vision in both eyes as a result of a failure to recognise the development of ischaemic and embolic damage to the visual system, in a young woman on the combined oral contraceptive pill with an underlying clotting disorder and congenital heart defect. The matter is due to go to trial in early 2017.

S v Barts Health NHS Trust

The claimant was an elderly man with depression who sustained an injury to the neck. When he attended the Accident and Emergency Department he was not examined and as a result no x-ray of the neck was undertaken which would have demonstrated a fracture of the odontoid peg of the 2nd cervical vertebral body. He was discharged home and over the following day developed significant neurological deficit.

S v Calderdale & Huddersfield Hospitals NHS Trust

Claimant was a man in his late 30s who presented to the Accident and Emergency Department with central chest pain which the defendant ultimately accepted was cardiac in nature. At the time he was informed that he had dyspepsia and was discharged home. He was admitted 2 days later to the same hospital with cardiogenic shock and was shown to have suffered a myocardial infarction. He was left with very poor left ventricular function and very impaired exercise capacity, and the expert evidence concluded that he would only achieve symptomatic improvement with a cardiac transplant.

Memberships/Qualifications

MB ChB Aberdeen University 1987

B Med Biol In medical Microbiology 1984

Shepherd Gold Medal in Surgery 1986

Strachan Prize and Medal in Medicine and Clinical Pharmacology 1986

Matthews Duncan Medal in Obstetrics and Gyaecology 1987

David Tomory Prize for most distinguished graduate 1987

PgDL College of Law Chester 2002

BVC – Very Competent Manchester Metropolitan University 2003

“Recommended for complex medico-legal cases” - Legal 500

Publications:

Personal Injury Law Journal
Anatomy and Physiology of Injury Oct/Nov 2009
Healing of Fractures Dec/Jan 2009-2010
Medical Experts and VAT Liability- Journal of the Expert Witness Institute Nov 2006.

Former Career:

Previously worked as a consultant cardiologist.

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Latest News

  • Clinical Negligence - 16, August
    consent and risks

    Informed Consent: Risks and Choices

    Alternative Text
    Posted by Joanna Lewis

    Breach of duty was established and causation followed when the Claimant did not give informed consent to an operation that left her tetraplegic. This case explores the implications of Montgomery v Lanarkshire Health Board [2015] UKSC 11 and the duty on doctors to ‘take reasonable care to ensure that the patient is aware of any … Continue reading Informed Consent: Risks and Choices

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  • Clinical Negligence - 16, August

    When is it appropriate to resort to the ‘Burden of Proof’?

    Alternative Text
    Posted by Lauren Seager

    Yip J had to turn her mind to the question of burden of proof in the case of Saunders -v- Central Manchester University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust [2018] EWHC 343 (QB). The claimant brought a clinical negligence claim alleging there had been a failure to reverse an ileostomy during surgery resulting in his colon becoming … Continue reading When is it appropriate to resort to the ‘Burden of Proof’?

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  • Clinical Negligence - 10, April
    red limitation

    Section 33 order disapplying limitation in clinical negligence case overturned

    Alternative Text
    Posted by Anna Johns

    In The Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust v De Meza [2017] EWCA Civ 1711 the Court of Appeal considered the relevant factors to be taken into account on an application under section 33 of the Limitation Act 1980. Background facts Mr De Meza brought a claim in 2014 against the NHS Trust (the first defendant) … Continue reading Section 33 order disapplying limitation in clinical negligence case overturned

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