Many millions in compensation obtained after maternity mistakes lead to uterine rupture birth injury and cerebral palsy

Many millions in compensation obtained after maternity mistakes lead to uterine rupture birth injury and cerebral palsy

Boyes Turner’s cerebral palsy lawyers have secured a very substantial compensation settlement for a teenage boy who suffered severe brain damage, whole body cerebral palsy and learning difficulties at birth from mistakes in his mother’s maternity care. The final settlement provides for a very sizeable lump sum for capital costs and contingencies, and a PPO which guarantees index-linked annual payments for care and case management rising to several hundred thousand pounds a year for the rest of his very long life expectancy.

Our client was his mother’s second child. Her first baby had been delivered by emergency caesarean section. During her second pregnancy, his mother was admitted to the defendant hospital in severe pain. Her symptoms suggested a placental abruption, a life-threatening condition in which the placenta detaches from the wall of the womb. To provide safe maternity care in these circumstances the maternity staff should have carried out continuous CTG monitoring of the unborn baby’s (fetal) heart rate. Instead, fetal heart-rate monitoring was stopped after abnormalities on the CTG, which should have been recognised as suspicious, were misinterpreted as normal.

Our client’s mother was then left unattended in labour. As her condition deteriorated, our client’s father repeatedly tried to ask a midwife to come and help. His concerns and requests for help were not recorded in the midwife’s notes. By the time the midwife attended, much later, the unborn baby’s heart rate could not be detected by CTG, Pinard stethoscope or ultrasound.

When steps were finally taken to carry out an emergency caesarean section, our client’s mother’s scar from her previous caesarean section was found to have ruptured. The baby had suffered hypoxic brain damage.

Making a cerebral palsy claim

When our client’s family asked us for help, we applied for the medical records which were inaccurate and incomplete. Our experienced lawyers and experts overcame these challenges and pursued a claim for compensation for our client’s injury and disability caused by the maternity staff’s negligent management of the pregnancy and birth. The defendant admitted liability. We obtained a liability judgment and immediate interim payment of £250,000 to ease the family’s hardship in meeting our client’s extensive needs whilst we worked with his family and our experts to assess the full value of the claim.

Our client is severely physically and intellectually disabled by his cerebral palsy. His needs for care, therapies, adapted accommodation and specialist equipment and his financial losses are extensive. He has a very long life expectation. Sadly, his parents have separated and we were able to secure funds not only for a suitably adapted property for our client, but also funds towards a secondary property where our client can spend time with his father. Round table meeting (RTM) negotiations with the defendant took place remotely during coronavirus lockdown, and settlement was achieved without the need for trial. As our client is a vulnerable person, his settlement needed approval by the court. His own and his family’s privacy are protected by an anonymity order.

If you are caring for someone with brain injury or neurological disability caused by medical negligence, and would like to find out more about making a claim, contact us by email at cerebralpalsy@boyesturner.com.

I try to assist lawyers by explaining, in clear and comprehensible terms, what the relevant issues are and where the strengths and weaknesses of the case lie.

DR PETER DEAR

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