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Pregnancy Related Claims

Pregnancy Related Claims 

Sadly not all pregnancies are perfect, and some aren’t even wanted. At this crucial time, the responsibility of the clinician is to safeguard the mother and her unborn baby. Any instance of medical negligence – and the basis for any compensation claims – usually hinges on cases where this safeguarding has not taken place.

At SSB Law our medical negligence compensation solicitors have the empathy to assist you with a medical negligence compensation claim arising from pregnancy related conditions.

Abortion

A common medical procedure, also referred to as termination, that involves the ending of a pregnancy and the removal of the unborn baby.  As long as certain criteria are met, abortions can be safely undertaken at any point during the first 24 weeks of pregnancy. Although it is so common, it’s still a medical procedure, so it carries an element of risk. At SSB Law our medical negligence compensation solicitors have identified the following issues:

• Failed abortion is an unsuccessful termination. This can be due to a failure of methods and incorrect checking of scans to make sure the procedure has been done properly. Drug induced abortions usually have a greater failure rate than surgical ones, while in some cases, where the baby has survived the abortion, the baby has been born with abnormalities.

• Haemorrhage, also known as excessive bleeding, occurs in about one in every 1,000 abortions.

• Damage to the cervix or womb.  The cervix is the entrance to the womb and in more than 1 in every 100 abortions, some form of damage is caused to the cervix. . Similarly, damage to the womb itself takes place in up to four of every 1,000 surgical abortions. These situations can cause serious long term problems for the patients involved.

• Womb Infections are a risk from this procedur eso this should be fully explained to the patient beforehand by the medical practtitioner. If left untreated, or not treated correctly, an infection could seriously damage the reproductive organs. For example, it could lead to pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) which can cause infertility.

 

Chromosome abnormalities in pregnancy

There are a number of tests available at the moment which can screen and diagnose any abnormalities in the early stages of pregnancy. These tests are primarily used to determine conditions like Down’s Syndrome or cystic fibrosis but sometimes they do fail or the results are not interpreted correctly. Here are some of the main tests available for expectant mothers:

 

• Serum screening This is a blood test performed at 15-20 weeks. It measures the levels of pregnancy hormones in the mother’s blood.

• Nuchal translucency measurement Ultrasound is used to measure the fluid space at the back of the foetus’s neck at 11 to 14 weeks. If the foetus is affected by Down’s, there will be a noticeably bigger space there.

• Diagnostic tests if there is any doubt about chromosomal abnormalities, cells can be taken from the foetus and examined for a more accurate appraisal.

• Amniocentesis is a well-known test. While mainly used for checking for Down’s and other chromosomal abnormalities, it can also determine the sex of the baby.

• Chorionic villus sampling (CVS) This examines a sample of the placenta and is performed at the 11 week stage.

Patients must bear in mind all of these tests carry a slight risk of miscarriage. Which is why fully informed consent should be obtained before the tests are carried out. That way the mother can balance the risk of having the test against the risk of undiscovered abnormality. If a fully informed decision is not made and complications aired compensation claims for medical negligence may arise.

Ectopic Pregnancy

An ectopic pregnancy is one where the baby grows outside of the uterus. If not diagnosed early damage can be caused to the Fallopian tubes resulting in sterility and serious health problems for the mother.

 

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