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Gynaecological Surgery Claims

If an operation goes wrong it can lead to serious health complications

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I am very happy and satisfied with the settlement you achieved for me and the service was excellent and thank you very much

Mrs E.Swaffield
Loughborough

Compensation for gynaecological surgery mistakes

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Our medical negligence team has years of experience working on a wide variety of negligent surgery cases so we understand just how difficult a decision it can be to bring a gynaecological case.

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That’s why we are committed to guiding you through every step of the process. We ensure that your claim is handled carefully and professionally by our specialist solicitors, while working alongside medical experts, to guarantee the best results for you.

Our negligent surgery team is headed by Laura Morgan who has a wealth of experience in leading complicated, gynaecological cases.

Laura is recognised within the legal profession as a leader in the field of medical negligence and serious injury compensation. Laura has acted in a wide range of cases over her 17 years of practice and has particular expertise in acting for children who have suffered brain injury due to mismanaged birth or surgical errors, and in managing claims that have resulted in the death of a loved one. Laura has achieved a number of large settlements including £5.4 million for a 7 year old and £4 million for an 11 year old child.

Laura’s expertise and dedication to her clients is recognised in the Chambers guide to the Legal Profession in which she was praised for the efficiency of her approach to case handling and described as “tenacious and detail-oriented”.

Laura has been a member of the Law Society Clinical Negligence Panel since 2005 and accredited as a Senior Litigator in the Association of Personal Injury Lawyers (APIL) since 2006. Laura is also a member of the specialist lawyers panel for Action against Medical Accidents (AvMA), the UK’s leading charity committed to patient safety and justice.

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The effects of medical negligence can be devastating for the individual and their families, so securing appropriate compensation for them as quickly as possible is our top priority.

Laura Morgan

Director of Medical Negligence

  For a confidential chat, call one of our experts today 0151 550 5228

What our customers say

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10 simple steps to claim

Step
1
Obtaining your medical records
Step
2
Providing your statement of what happened
Step
3
Minimising your loss
Step
4
Establishing that a breach of duty occurred
Step
5
Estabilishing the effect of the breach of duty
Step
86
Preparing your case for CourtCalculating the value of your claim
Step
7
Proving your loss
Step
68
Calculating the value of your claimPreparing your case for Court
Step
9
Attending the trial in Court
Step
10
Awarding your compensation claim

Your questions... answered

What are common gynaecological procedures and their risks?

A common procedure is the removal of an ovarian cyst. Ovarian cysts are fluid-filled sacs that can grow inside or on the surface of the ovaries. They are usually removed by keyhole surgery, although standard surgery will be required if the ovaries are cancerous.

What are the risks of ovarian surgery?

Risks of ovarian surgery include:

• Bowel or bladder may be damaged during surgery
• Ovarian cysts may return
• Pain may not be controlled
• Scar tissue may form on the ovaries, fallopian tubes or in the pelvis
• Infection may develop.

What is pelvic organ prolapse?

The pelvic organs - bladder, rectum and vaginal areas – can become stretched out of position during pregnancy. Known as a prolapse, this may become permanent.

There are two types of procedures:

• Obliterative surgery - narrows or closes off the vagina to provide support for prolapsed organs. Sexual intercourse is not possible after this procedure.

• Reconstructive surgery - reconstructs the pelvic floor with the goal of restoring the organs to their original position. The patient’s own tissues or a synthetic mesh may be used. A procedure to prevent urinary incontinence may be carried out at the same time.

What are the risks of pelvic organ prolapse surgery?

A vaginally placed mesh has a significant risk of complications, including mesh erosion, pain, infection and urinary incontinence.

• Age - surgery at a young age increases the chance that prolapse will recur and may possibly require additional treatment. Surgery at an older age may be affected by general health issues and any prior procedures.

• Childbearing or family planning – surgery should be postponed to avoid the risk of a prolapse happening again after corrective surgery.

What does stress urinary incontinence surgery involve?

Stress incontinence is usually caused by the weakening or damaging of the muscles used to prevent the unintentional passing of urine, often following childbirth.

To reduce pressure on the bladder, surgical treatments include the attachment of a tape or a sling.

Tape procedure risks

• The need to pass urine increases and becomes more urgent but the patient is unable to completely empty their bladder.
• Tape can wear away or move over time, requiring surgery at a later stage to adjust this.

Sling procedure

• A sling can be made of:
• Synthetic material
• Tissue is taken from another part of the body
• Tissue donated from another person
• Tissue is taken from an animal such as cow or pig tissue

Common risks:

• Difficulty emptying the bladder fully when passing urine.
• Development of urge incontinence - urine leaks when there is a sudden, intense urge to pass urine, or soon afterwards.

What is a hysterectomy?

A hysterectomy is irreversible and a woman should only consent to the operation if she does not wish to have children in the future. There are two types of hysterectomy:

Vaginal hysterectomy - the womb is removed through the vagina.

Abdominal hysterectomy – the womb is removed through an incision in the stomach. The fallopian tubes and ovaries may also be removed.

A hysterectomy is nearly always necessary if there is a confirmed diagnosis of:

• Cancer of the cervix (neck of the womb) or uterus (womb)

• Fibroids - fibrous tissue that can develop in the wall of the womb causing painful and excessive bleeding

• Endometriosis - where pieces of womb lining appear outside the womb cavity, causing inflammation and discomfort

• Pelvic inflammatory disease

• Prolapse of the womb.

The procedure is also usually recommended when ovarian cancer is diagnosed.

Many hysterectomies are still performed even if cancer is not present. A doctor may strongly advise the procedure where bleeding or pain from the womb is causing increasing difficulties.

Risks associated with both procedures:

• Heavy bleeding during surgery
• Post-surgery infection involving the wound or bladder
• Damage to the bladder or tubes that carry urine from the kidneys to the bladder.

What is endometrial ablation?

This is a common procedure to stop excessive menstrual bleeding. Treatment involves the destruction of the womb's inner lining by scarring the tissue in one of the following ways:

• Electrical heat - a small electric current heats up a wire loop or ball-shaped sensor
• Laser ablation - a high-energy beam of light
• Heated fluid – a deflated balloon is filled with a heated fluid
• Microwaves (MEA) - a microwave probe that moves from side to side
• Radio waves – a probe emits radio waves.

Side-effects

• Nausea
• Cramping pains or discomfort.
• Vaginal bleeding during and after surgery, which may last for up to three to four weeks.
• Complications
• Inflammation of the womb lining
• Infection of the urinary tract (bladder)
• Damage to the womb, bladder or bowel
• Burns to the womb, vagina or skin when heated liquids and probes are used

What is ovarian surgery?

Removal of an ovary can take place when cancer is confirmed or if there are multiple painful cysts. The procedure may also be carried out if endometriosis (womb lining material) is detected.

It may be considered unnecessary to remove the entire ovary if:

• There is just a spot of endometriosis on the ovary, or
• Only cysts are present as they can be drained, leaving behind healthy ovaries.

What is tubal ligation?

Tubal ligation is a form of permanent sterilisation. It is therefore essential that, before a patient consents to proceed with sterilisation, they do so having been made fully aware and also clearly understand that the procedure is permanent. At the same time, a patient should also be informed that there is a slight chance that the procedure will not work and a pregnancy can still occur.

The operation is usually carried out by keyhole surgery. A portion of the fallopian tube is usually removed to prove that the procedure was successful and the cut ends are tied, burned or clipped.

Risks include:

• Injury to the abdominal wall or to structures near the fallopian tubes.

Can errors occur fitting a contraceptive device?

Yes, errors can occur during the insertion of a contraceptive coil that can cause a tear to the uterus.

What else can you tell me about gynaecological surgery claims?

Gynaecological claims can fall into one of two categories:

Failure to treat or diagnose a gynaecological complication

- a failure to carry out appropriate tests, or
- misreading test results after having carried out the correct tests

Positive action by a doctor that causes a gynaecological injury
- carrying out an incorrect procedure in response to a certain set of circumstances, or
- carrying out the procedure in an incorrect manner after selecting the correct procedure in a certain set of circumstances.

To bring a successful negligence claim, it will be necessary to prove that:

• The treatment received fell below an acceptable standard
• The injury or harm suffered arose as a result of the substandard treatment.

How can Your Legal Friend help you?

Mistakes made during gynaecological surgery can lead to painful complications, long term injuries and irreversible damage.

As experienced clinical negligence specialists, we know that the physical and psychological trauma that can arise from a gynaecological injury can also affect personal and social wellbeing. We also know that you will want to find out why your surgeon failed you or a family member in their duty to provide the expected standard of care and treatment.

From our first conversation and throughout the case, Your Legal Friend is committed to fighting for your interests every step of the way. Our task is to ensure your voice is heard and your case made in order to bring the hospital, health trust or medical practitioner to account for the harm and suffering caused.

Your Legal Friend is committed to ensuring victims of clinical negligence obtain answers and receive appropriate compensation so that their future medical treatment and care needs are properly met.

A common procedure is the removal of an ovarian cyst. Ovarian cysts are fluid-filled sacs that can grow inside or on the surface of the ovaries. They are usually removed by keyhole surgery, although standard surgery will be required if the ovaries are cancerous.

Risks of ovarian surgery include:

• Bowel or bladder may be damaged during surgery
• Ovarian cysts may return
• Pain may not be controlled
• Scar tissue may form on the ovaries, fallopian tubes or in the pelvis
• Infection may develop.

The pelvic organs - bladder, rectum and vaginal areas – can become stretched out of position during pregnancy. Known as a prolapse, this may become permanent.

There are two types of procedures:

• Obliterative surgery - narrows or closes off the vagina to provide support for prolapsed organs. Sexual intercourse is not possible after this procedure.

• Reconstructive surgery - reconstructs the pelvic floor with the goal of restoring the organs to their original position. The patient’s own tissues or a synthetic mesh may be used. A procedure to prevent urinary incontinence may be carried out at the same time.

A vaginally placed mesh has a significant risk of complications, including mesh erosion, pain, infection and urinary incontinence.

• Age - surgery at a young age increases the chance that prolapse will recur and may possibly require additional treatment. Surgery at an older age may be affected by general health issues and any prior procedures.

• Childbearing or family planning – surgery should be postponed to avoid the risk of a prolapse happening again after corrective surgery.

Stress incontinence is usually caused by the weakening or damaging of the muscles used to prevent the unintentional passing of urine, often following childbirth.

To reduce pressure on the bladder, surgical treatments include the attachment of a tape or a sling.

Tape procedure risks

• The need to pass urine increases and becomes more urgent but the patient is unable to completely empty their bladder.
• Tape can wear away or move over time, requiring surgery at a later stage to adjust this.

Sling procedure

• A sling can be made of:
• Synthetic material
• Tissue is taken from another part of the body
• Tissue donated from another person
• Tissue is taken from an animal such as cow or pig tissue

Common risks:

• Difficulty emptying the bladder fully when passing urine.
• Development of urge incontinence - urine leaks when there is a sudden, intense urge to pass urine, or soon afterwards.

A hysterectomy is irreversible and a woman should only consent to the operation if she does not wish to have children in the future. There are two types of hysterectomy:

Vaginal hysterectomy - the womb is removed through the vagina.

Abdominal hysterectomy – the womb is removed through an incision in the stomach. The fallopian tubes and ovaries may also be removed.

A hysterectomy is nearly always necessary if there is a confirmed diagnosis of:

• Cancer of the cervix (neck of the womb) or uterus (womb)

• Fibroids - fibrous tissue that can develop in the wall of the womb causing painful and excessive bleeding

• Endometriosis - where pieces of womb lining appear outside the womb cavity, causing inflammation and discomfort

• Pelvic inflammatory disease

• Prolapse of the womb.

The procedure is also usually recommended when ovarian cancer is diagnosed.

Many hysterectomies are still performed even if cancer is not present. A doctor may strongly advise the procedure where bleeding or pain from the womb is causing increasing difficulties.

Risks associated with both procedures:

• Heavy bleeding during surgery
• Post-surgery infection involving the wound or bladder
• Damage to the bladder or tubes that carry urine from the kidneys to the bladder.

This is a common procedure to stop excessive menstrual bleeding. Treatment involves the destruction of the womb's inner lining by scarring the tissue in one of the following ways:

• Electrical heat - a small electric current heats up a wire loop or ball-shaped sensor
• Laser ablation - a high-energy beam of light
• Heated fluid – a deflated balloon is filled with a heated fluid
• Microwaves (MEA) - a microwave probe that moves from side to side
• Radio waves – a probe emits radio waves.

Side-effects

• Nausea
• Cramping pains or discomfort.
• Vaginal bleeding during and after surgery, which may last for up to three to four weeks.
• Complications
• Inflammation of the womb lining
• Infection of the urinary tract (bladder)
• Damage to the womb, bladder or bowel
• Burns to the womb, vagina or skin when heated liquids and probes are used

Removal of an ovary can take place when cancer is confirmed or if there are multiple painful cysts. The procedure may also be carried out if endometriosis (womb lining material) is detected.

It may be considered unnecessary to remove the entire ovary if:

• There is just a spot of endometriosis on the ovary, or
• Only cysts are present as they can be drained, leaving behind healthy ovaries.

Tubal ligation is a form of permanent sterilisation. It is therefore essential that, before a patient consents to proceed with sterilisation, they do so having been made fully aware and also clearly understand that the procedure is permanent. At the same time, a patient should also be informed that there is a slight chance that the procedure will not work and a pregnancy can still occur.

The operation is usually carried out by keyhole surgery. A portion of the fallopian tube is usually removed to prove that the procedure was successful and the cut ends are tied, burned or clipped.

Risks include:

• Injury to the abdominal wall or to structures near the fallopian tubes.

Yes, errors can occur during the insertion of a contraceptive coil that can cause a tear to the uterus.

Gynaecological claims can fall into one of two categories:

Failure to treat or diagnose a gynaecological complication

- a failure to carry out appropriate tests, or
- misreading test results after having carried out the correct tests

Positive action by a doctor that causes a gynaecological injury
- carrying out an incorrect procedure in response to a certain set of circumstances, or
- carrying out the procedure in an incorrect manner after selecting the correct procedure in a certain set of circumstances.

To bring a successful negligence claim, it will be necessary to prove that:

• The treatment received fell below an acceptable standard
• The injury or harm suffered arose as a result of the substandard treatment.

Mistakes made during gynaecological surgery can lead to painful complications, long term injuries and irreversible damage.

As experienced clinical negligence specialists, we know that the physical and psychological trauma that can arise from a gynaecological injury can also affect personal and social wellbeing. We also know that you will want to find out why your surgeon failed you or a family member in their duty to provide the expected standard of care and treatment.

From our first conversation and throughout the case, Your Legal Friend is committed to fighting for your interests every step of the way. Our task is to ensure your voice is heard and your case made in order to bring the hospital, health trust or medical practitioner to account for the harm and suffering caused.

Your Legal Friend is committed to ensuring victims of clinical negligence obtain answers and receive appropriate compensation so that their future medical treatment and care needs are properly met.