Case study: misdiagnosed perineal tear leads to £380,000 award

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A common form of birth injury is a perineal tear. It’s an injury to the soft tissue separating the vagina from the end of the bowel. Modern medicine is able to repair injuries like these, however, to do so, the tear needs to be diagnosed correctly.

If perineal tears aren’t treated properly, they can have life-changing impact on women. They can lead to various medical problems including incontinence, mobility problems and complications in future child births.

This is why misdiagnosis of a perineal tear can be so severe. Our medical negligence solicitors recently helped a woman reach a financial settlement and hold her hospital to account over the misdiagnosis of a perineal tear.

Our client (Miss B) was kindly willing to let us share her story to help inform others who may have gone through similar injuries after childbirth.

Case study: misdiagnosis of perineal tear

Our client, Miss B, came to our medical negligence solicitors for help after suffering a fourth degree perineal tear and rectovaginal fistula during the birth of her baby.

She was admitted to the hospital in labour, and delivered her baby naturally. During the birth, she suffered a perineal tear which was diagnosed by medical staff as being less serious than it actually was. Consequently, it was not properly repaired.

In fact, our client’s injuries at the time of the baby’s delivery were much more serious than diagnosed. Miss B suffered from incontinence and damage to her emotional and psychological well-being as a result.

Surgery to repair the perineal tear

Although Miss B was referred to see a specialist and underwent surgery, the damage she endured could not be properly rectified as it would have been had she been treated properly following the birth.

The incident and the resulting effects on our client’s health have severely damaged her professional confidence and her ability to pursue her career in the way she could have done otherwise. Long term, the injuries she suffered are likely to create further complications for her later in life.

Our medical negligence solicitors worked with Miss B as sensitively as possible to assess the impact of her injuries. We approached independent experts to help assess her injuries and prognosis.

Once we had investigated her situation thoroughly, we issued the perineal tear misdiagnosis claim. The hospital accepted responsibility. We then measured the impact of our client’s injuries on her life and career and negotiated a settlement.

Securing compensation for the birth injury

In total, our medical negligence solicitors were able to win £380,000 compensation for Miss B. Whilst this, nor any amount of money, can make up for the pain and suffering she has experienced, it will help her as she rebuilds her life.

We also hope that by highlighting the failures in her treatment, similar mistakes will be less likely to happen in the hospital where she gave birth.

Further information on making a perineal tear claim

If you’ve been affected by misdiagnosis of a perineal tear, or any other type of maternity injury, we’re here to help. Our medical negligence lawyers are experts in investigating mistakes which cause birth injuries and can help women affected by negligence during childbirth.

To speak to a solicitor specialising in birth injury claims, call us on 0117 325 2929 or complete our online enquiry form.


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