There is possibly nothing more devastating than losing one’s eyesight, especially if the loss is complete and unrecoverable. Unfortunately our eyes are both our most prized and most delicate organs, and a large number of conditions and injuries can cause blindness including macular degeneration, stroke, diabetes, infection, and glaucoma. It is thought that around seven million people in the world go blind each year, and that 80% of that blindness could have been prevented if proper treatment had been given. In the UK, 20,000 people have to deal with the tragedy of going blind each year.
Blindness caused by accidents and malpractice
An incredibly complex organ, the eye is comprised of viscous tissue that is extremely vulnerable to any kind of trauma. Blows to the face or head can result in the total loss of sight, as can chemical burns and cuts. Even grit in the eye can cause complete blindness if it cannot be removed and is allowed to scar the cornea to such a degree that sight is lost. Lights, if bright enough, can also cause blindness in exactly the same way that the bright flash from a camera can cause momentary blindness. This means that welders, who have to work with extremely bright lights on a regular basis, are particularly vulnerable to workplace accidents causing blindness. Even the laser pens commonly used as cat toys can cause blindness if they are shone directly into the eye.
Sadly, many people go blind each year as a result of misdiagnosis and mistreatment of their existing conditions. Recently, an Australian woman being treated at Canberra hospital went blind after being given an anti-coagulant drug which caused a brain haemorrhage. In another recent case, a patient went blind after the dye for a CT scan was wrongly administered.
Compensation for those who have gone blind
If you have lost your sight due to an accident or injury that wasn’t your fault, or after having been misdiagnosed or mistreated by a medical professional, you may be entitled to personal injury compensation. While this could never fully compensate for the suffering you have experienced, this legal provision exists to help victims adjust to their new lives and deal with the possible loss of their future earnings. If you’d like to know more, call Accident Advice Helpline to speak to one of our trained advisers who will be able to give you an idea of how likely your case is to be successful and how much compensation you could possibly receive. If you choose to go ahead with your claim, it can most often be done over the telephone and on a no win, no fee* basis.
Date Published: November 22, 2013
Author: David Brown