Case Studies: Healthcare

£275,000 damages for Bladder and Bowel Injuries during Childbirth

The Plaintiff retained O’Reilly Stewart Solicitors to act on her behalf in respect of injuries that she sustained in 2014 at the time of the birth of her first child.

Initially misdiagnosed as being in the second stage of labour, the Plaintiff was encouraged to push down for an hour.  Slow progress was identified in the course of the delivery, and the labour was augmented by the use of a Syntocinon drip, medication used to stimulate uterine contractions.  Ultimately the second stage of labour began, and thereafter the Syntocinon was increased.  Fetal distress was diagnosed during the course of the second stage of the labour, and a decision was made to assist the delivery with the use of forceps.  During the course of the delivery the Plaintiff suffered a third degree tear.

The Plaintiff spent approximately 6 days in Hospital after delivery.  Her discharge was delayed because of urinary problems.  She suffered urinary retention on two occasions, which went undiagnosed, resulting in distension of her bladder.  As a consequence of same, she has no sensation of bladder filling.

The Plaintiff sustained a variety of injuries including the third degree tear.  The Plaintiff continues to suffer ongoing symptoms of incontinence of flatus and staining of pads due to leakage.  Additionally, due to the urinary retention, the Plaintiff has suffered persistent loss of sensation in her bladder, obstructive voiding and she continues to undertake intermittent self-catheterisation.  Unsurprisingly, by reason of the injuries sustained, the Plaintiff suffered upset and distress in the form of an adjustment disorder after the birth of her first child.  The Plaintiff did not miss any time from work due to her injury, but there exists a risk of future impairment in her work by reason of the symptoms she continues to suffer.

The Plaintiff instructed Patrick Mullarkey .  We investigated her case and proceedings were issued on her behalf, after a thorough investigation, on 3rd March 2020.  The case was set down for hearing and listed in December 2022.  After the exchange of expert evidence in accordance with usual practice, the parties engaged in negotiations and the case was settled in the Plaintiff’s favour with a payment in the sum of £275,000.  The Plaintiff, who had privately funded this action, recovered her full costs from the Defendant, to include all of the outlays funded during the course of the investigation and prosecution of her case.

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