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A pensioner who was left with a weak, husky and painful voice following negligent surgery at an NHS hospital has been awarded £35,000 in compensation.

As a result of her injury, the 70-year-old woman had difficulty making herself heard and had needed to give up singing in her local church choir.

She suffered nerve damage, affecting her vocal cords, during an operation to unblock an artery in her neck. The NHS trust which managed the hospital denied liability; however, following a hearing, the High Court found that the injury was probably caused by the surgeon’s negligence.

The woman returned to her job as a sheltered housing warden after the operation but found that her condition interfered with her work. She was socially handicapped by her weak voice and her hopes of finding further employment after her enforced retirement at 65 had been stymied.

It was concluded that the woman had been a victim of clinical negligence.

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