North-west law firm Birchall Blackburn has recently settled what is believed tobe the first successful claim in the Country arising from laser eye surgery.
‘LASIK’ stands for ‘laser assisted in situ keratomileusis’ and is a surgical treatment to correct mainly short-sightedness, carried out by ophthalmic surgeons. Certain eye conditions, such as dry eyes, may make LASIK unsuitable.
The Claimant, a 44 year-old woman from Morecambe in Lancashire, had LASIK surgery to her eyes on the 23rd August 2001. She had previously been told by her optician that she suffered from dry eyes and, whereas this was not thought to be sufficiently serious to make her unsuitable for laser eye surgery, she should have been told that LASIK could result in a significant worsening of her dry eye problem. Had she been told about this, she may not have proceeded with surgery.
The Claimant alleged that she was not properly advised about the risks involved and that she did not provide informed consent to treatment. Her claim against the ophthalmic surgeon who carried out the surgery was settled with his insurer’s consent on the 21st April 2006.
The Claimant was represented by Duncan Stackhouse of Birchall Blackburn.