Case Study of a sucessful North Devon District Hospital medical negligence claim
On 19th December 2015 our client gave birth to a baby girl at North Devon District Hospital, the delivery was uneventful. She was discharged from hospital later the same day.
However, on Monday 11th January 2016 the new mother started to feel unwell. She was experiencing cramping pains in her stomach. The following day she had severe pains on the right side of her stomach and remained in bed for the day. She found it painful to stand up or move around and had a temperature.
She continued to feel unwell and had a telephone consultation with her GP surgery on 14th January. She was asked to attend the surgery in person that day and upon examination had a temperature of 37.2. She was noted as having “pain on moving/coughing/sitting up. Tender all across lower abdomen with percussion tenderness and mild rebound”.
She was then sent to A&E at North Devon District Hospital with a query as to whether she was suffering from appendicitis or endometritis.
On admission to hospital her plan included a gynaecological review querying potential post delivery complications. The claimant was reviewed by a gynaecologist following which it was noted, “good story for appendix”. However, an ultra sound scan was performed later that morning, when appendicitis was ruled out.
The woman was monitored at the North Devon District Hospital hospital for the next three days, during which time her condition deteriorated.
By 17th January she was suffering from a distended abdomen, vomiting, a spike temperature and a CRP level of 104 – which subsequently rose to 286 on 18th January and 344 on 19th January.
On 19th January she underwent a CT scan which concluded “appendix abscess is most likely. This is causing mid small bowel obstruction and right ureteric obstruction”. Arrangements were then made for her to undergo an emergency laparotomy and perforated appendicectomy with peritoneal wash out.
Following her experiences the woman consulted Slee Blackwell medical negligence specialist, Oliver Thorne. Oliver agreed to take on the case, working under a No Win, No Fee Agreement.
Supportive expert evidence was obtained from a consultant general surgeon. An admission of liability was made by Northern Devon Healthcare NHS Trust. Subsequently an offer of £20,000 was received. A counter offer of £25,000 was made which was accepted by the defendant and the negligence claim was concluded accordingly.
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