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Hysterectomy Leading To Internal Damage

Hysterectomy Leading To Internal Damage

If you suffer internal damage during a hysterectomy procedure, you will understandably have many questions you need answered. For example, you may wonder whether you were given adequate warning about the risks involved, what treatment should be given, and whether or not this amounts to medical negligence. This article takes a look at these questions, helping you to find the information you are looking for.

Perforation During Hysterectomy

A hysterectomy is an operation to remove the womb. This may be done for a number of reasons, but is ordinarily used to treated conditions such as heavy periods, pelvic inflammatory disease, fibroids or uterine cancer.

After a woman has had a hysterectomy, she will no longer be able to have children. A lot of consideration must therefore be given to whether or not it is the right option. However, if it is decided the operation is indeed necessary, a patient will be consulted on the potential complications and side-effects of a hysterectomy procedure. During this discussion, a medical professional will mention the risks which could arise during the operation itself, part of which will include organ damage. It is only after a patient has been advised of these risks that a consent form can be signed.

Thus a patient will be told prior to surgery that there is the possibility organs will be harmed in the course of the operation. In particular, there is the chance that the bladder, bowel or rectum will be perforated. It should also be noted that this risk is higher in those undergoing a laparoscopic procedure.

What If A Perforation Is Left Untreated?

When an organ is perforated during a hysterectomy, it is essential the damage is quickly recognised. If it is, the puncture can (in most cases) be repaired there and then. This will prevent a patient having to undergo a second procedure, and will simply set-back the recovery time by two to three days.

However, there are unfortunately times when a patient suffers a perforation which goes entirely unnoticed. In such an event, it is likely a woman will appear to be making a good recovery and discharged from hospital, only to develop further complications. Depending upon the location of the puncture, an undiagnosed and untreated perforation to the bowel, bladder or rectum can cause a woman to suffer:-

  • Urine incontinence;
  • Faecal incontinence;
  • A frequent need to urinate;
  • Recurrent infection.

If treatment is still not provided, these complications could lead renal failure or even multi-organ failure.

Does This Amount To Medical Negligence?

Therefore internal damage sustained during a hysterectomy will not necessarily amount to medical negligence. Indeed, such complications can occur even when the surgeon and his team are operating with the utmost skill and attention.

However, if a perforation is not identified at the time of the procedure, a patient will become extremely unwell. In such cases, it can be said that the standard of care has fallen below an acceptable standard. If this has happened to you, contact a medical negligence solicitor to discover what action you should take next. This is because you may have been the victim of medical negligence, and you could claim compensation for the pain and suffering you have experienced.

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Early legal assistance can be vital so please contact us if you would like to discuss your situation. Please call us free on 0800 234 3300 (or from a mobile 01275 334030) or complete our Online Enquiry Form.

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