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Gaceta Sanitaria

Print version ISSN 0213-9111


SARDINERO-GARCIA, Carlos et al. Liability for loss of chance in neurological conditions in the Spanish public healthcare system. Gac Sanit [online]. 2017, vol.31, n.1, pp.30-34. ISSN 0213-9111.


To analyse the sentences due to loss of chance that were passed by the Contentious-Administrative Court (i.e., in public medicine), in which both the origin of the disease to be treated and the damages were neurological.


We analysed the 90 sentences concerning neurological conditions that referred to the concept of loss of chance that were passed in Spain from 2003 (year of the first sentence) until May 2014.


Of the 90 sentences, 52 (57.8%) were passed due to diagnostic error and 30 (33.3%), due to inadequate treatment. 72 (80.0%) of the sentences were passed from 2009 onwards, which equates to more than a 300% increase with respect to the 18 (20.0%) issued in the first six years of the study (from 2003 to 2008). Most of the patients (66.7%) were men, and a 61.1% presented sequelae. Hypoxic-ischaemic encephalopathy (14.4%) and spinal cord disorders (14.4%) were the most common conditions to lead to sentencing.


The litigant activity due to loss of chance in neurological disease in the Spanish public healthcare system has significantly increased in the last few years. The sentences were mainly passed because of diagnostic error or inadequate treatment.

Keywords : Loss of chance; Sentences; Compensation; Neurology.

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