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31 August 2012
In this Clinical Negligence case our client’s first child was born in 2005 by emergency Caesarean section when she was aged 32. She subsequently had difficulty conceiving again and after IVF treatment became pregnant in 2010.
In November 2010 she was admitted for induction of labour, hoping for a normal vaginal delivery. However after attempting assisted delivery by ventouse the decision was made to take her to theatre for a Caesarean section and her baby was successfully delivered.
She was catheterised and after returning to the ward it was noted that her urine was blood-stained. A few hours later she was complaining of severe abdominal pain. She was seen by a urologist, investigated with a CT scan and found to have a hole in her bladder. She was transferred to theatre and underwent emergency laparotomy (open abdominal surgery) to repair her bladder. After surgery she was admitted to the High Dependency Unit.
Her stay in hospital was extended and she unfortunately developed MRSA which was effectively treated with antibiotics.
The whole experience had been traumatic and prevented her from being able to care for and breast-feed her baby during the early weeks. She developed an Adjustment Disorder with anxiety and depression for which she needed counselling and Cognitive Behavioural Therapy. She felt unable to have further children despite having embryos available through the IVF treatment. Expert evidence was obtained from an Obstetrician, Urologist and Psychiatrist.
In response to a letter of claim, liability was admitted and the claim was settled by negotiation with the Hospital Trust paying damages in the amount of £22,500 compensation.
Paul Sankey is a Senior Clinical Negligence Solicitor at Slater and Gordon Lawyers in London.
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