Compartment syndrome results from excessive bleeding into
muscle compartments that do not readily expand. The bleeding
increases the pressure within the compartment, restricting
circulation and depriving the muscle fibres of oxygen.
This can result in death of the muscle tissue.
Causes of Compartment Syndrome:
Compartment Syndrome is usually associated with trauma
a crush injury
It may also occur from compression either external, for
example from tight bandages or plaster cast.
Or it can arise internally, such as internal bleeding causing
a haematoma. It is usually a medical emergency since the
rapid increase in the pressure within the muscle compartment
may completely cut off the blood supply to the affected
Symptoms of Compartment Syndrome:
Severe pain which is often severe and out of proportion
to the injury, present at rest and may be worse on movement.
This pain does not decrease with medication or with elevation
of the affected limb.
Burning sensation or tightness around the affected area
Decreased sensation as the syndrome becomes more advanced.
Pins and needles can occur in the arm or leg affected and
there may be reduced sensation, paleness, coldness and/or
The skin over the compartment will be tensely swollen and
How might there be a claim for medical negligence
from cases of Compartment Syndrome?
Most claims are due to a delay in diagnosis and/or treatment
once diagnosed. Time is of the essence once the condition
is diagnosed, as there is only a small window of opportunity
to prevent permanent nerve damage occurring.
It is vital that you instruct an expert medical
negligence claims solicitor in order to get the best advice and information
on your claim.