Gillian became pregnant for the first time in September 1988.
On 14 May 1989, she suffered a spontaneous rupture of membranes and was admitted to the Garden Hospital in London. The first stage of the labour was prolonged. The second stage of labour lasted at least 5 hours and the defendant made no attempt to intervene and expedite delivery. The defendant also failed to monitor the fetus. Gillian's baby girl was stillborn on 15 May 1989.
Following the stillbirth, Gillian became severely depressed and suicidal.
A few months later Gillian was diagnosed with advanced breast cancer. She was successfully treated with a radical mastectomy, local radiotherapy and chemotherapy and advised to refrain from further pregnancies for at least 3 years.
Five years later in 1994, Gillian became pregnant for the second time. She developed cancer in her other breast during the pregnancy and underwent a second mastectomy. Her baby daughter was delivered by Caesarean section 3 weeks later. The little girl was subsequently diagnosed with cystic fibrosis.
In January 1996 we received instructions to act on Gillian's behalf in a birth injury claim relating to the stillborn birth of her daughter in 1989.
Proceedings were issued immediately, as the primary limitation period had expired approximately 4 years earlier. A trial on limitation as a preliminary issue was fixed for 22 May 1997. Following exchange of affidavit evidence, the defendant accepted that limitation should not be contested. Shortly afterwards an admission of liability was made and judgment entered.
The claim included care for Gillian’s daughter. Pathological examination had confirmed that the stillborn infant would not have had cystic fibrosis. A claim was made for additional care required for bringing up a child with this condition.
A payment into court of £160,000 was made shortly before trial which Gillian accepted.
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