A patient has told how she was left in excruciating pain for months after a gynaecologist performed a totally unnecessary and inappropriate operation.
The patient thought she had gone in to Frimley Park Hospital, in Camberley, Surrey, in 2010 to have a minor procedure to insert a mesh to repair a vaginal prolapse. But instead, Consultant Obstetrician and Gynaecologist Jayne Cockburn undertook far more risky and unconventional surgery without explaining the dangers associated with the treatment.
The patient later discovered that the wrong materials had been used to repair her injury which resulted in the mesh eroding. She has now been awarded an undisclosed amount of clinical negligence compensation after taking legal action against Frimley Park Hospital NHS Foundation Trust where Miss Cockburn worked.
The unnamed patient said, “It was totally bewildering when I woke up to find that I was bleeding from incision wounds. I’d gone in for a routine operation and woke up with holes in my body from unexpected keyhole surgery. “I was in agony and the pain just did not subside. This went on for months. Sitting was unbearable.”
Assured the pain would subside, she was sent home to recover. But weeks after the surgery she was still enduring excruciating discomfort.
During a follow-up examination three months later, Gynaecologist Jayne Cockburn admitted her initial operation had not been successful and the mesh would need to be removed. Miss Cockburn also recommended a hysterectomy and further prolapse repair.
However, just days before the operation was scheduled the patient was told Miss Cockburn was not available and that another consultant would take over her care.
It was only then that the full scale of damage done by the first operation was discovered. The patient was advised that a hysterectomy and further prolapse repair was entirely unnecessary and would not be attempted.
She was informed however that an operation was needed to try to remove the mesh which had become embedded in her flesh. Unfortunately this operation was only partially successful. As a result the patient has been left with parts of the mesh still in-situ and with chronic pain.
The hospital admitted that Miss Cockburn failed to obtain the patient’s consent, failed to perform the procedure set out in the consent form and then carried out incorrect surgery.
The patient added, “I put my trust in this woman. When you go into hospital you expect the surgeons have your best interests at heart and they will not do anything that will cause unnecessary pain. I was furious when I found out what had actually been done to me without my consent.
“When I saw Miss Cockburn again and explained how much pain I was in, she told me I was unique because the mesh hadn’t taken which she claimed was extremely unusual. She told me I’d need another operation to remove the mesh which had been causing the pain. “I count myself lucky that she never actually got to operate on me the second time because it could have been an awful lot worse than how she’s left me”.
The patient’s Clinical Negligence Lawyer at Slater and Gordon said, “This is a really shocking case. A patient puts their trust and life in the hands of a surgeon whenever they require an operation. You have to expect they will perform to the highest standards of care and professionalism.
“But in this case, Jayne Cockburn’s behaviour was staggeringly negligent and dangerous which has caused my client months of extreme pain and anguish, not to mention more surgery to repair the damage.
“We are investigating another serious allegation against this surgeon and are aware that the Hospital Trust has written to many patients advising them that their care under Miss Cockburn is being reviewed and that she is under investigation by the General Medical Council. It is suspected there are other women who may have had unnecessary or inappropriate surgery carried out on them by this gynaecologist.”
Slater and Gordon Lawyers offer a free consultation for people who have suffered from clinical or medical negligence. Call freephone 0800 916 9049 or contact us online and we’ll be happy to help you.
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