We obtained expert evidence to support that during the second stage of her labour, when it was decided to try to deliver her baby using forceps, the obstetrician failed to rotate the baby’s head before applying traction, failed to use the correct technique resulting in such excessive force that he slipped, and failed to perform a mediolateral episiotomy. As a result, the woman suffered a 4th degree tear of her perineum.
This resulted in a prolonged stay in hospital for treatment of the tear as well as ongoing faecal incontinence with urgency and the need for further treatment. Understandably, this has caused her significant distress. She now suffers dyspareunia (painful sexual intercourse) and had to give birth to her second child by way of Caesarean Section.
Her symptoms have put a strain on her marital relationship and made it difficult for her to care for her children and to return to work. She suffered from depression and bulimia because of her injuries. Her ongoing faecal incontinence continues to impact on her ability to leave the house unimpeded and to work, for which she is disadvantaged on the labour market. Iona achieved a six figure settlement for her.
Iona’s client commented after the case:
"Iona, I can never thank you enough for all your effort to get this money. It will really help me. You know I really need it because I hate my life as it is and this will restore my quality of life. I can get the treatment I need and help to look after my boys."
Image: By Thomas Blomberg [CC BY-SA 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], from Wikimedia Commons
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