Our client, a 39-year-old mother of three children, suffered a third-degree anal tear (affecting the muscles of the anal sphincter) during the course of delivering her first child in September 2016 by forceps. The case included allegations that there was a failure to recognise the tear at the point of delivery.

Gabriela’s story – the background

Our client knew that something was wrong after her first child was born by forceps delivery. Initially she was diagnosed with a second-degree tear (affecting the muscle of the perineum and the skin, usually only requiring suturing). Following discharge from hospital she experienced episodes of faecal incontinence and increased bowel urgency which deteriorated.

Initially she was reassured that all she needed to do was to work on her pelvic floor muscles. Subsequent investigations however identified that she had sustained a much worse third-degree tear as opposed to a less serious second-degree tear. By this point the damage was irreversible and she had lost the window of opportunity for an effective surgical repair. She went on to have two further children by caesarean section.

Maya Sushila

Maya Sushila

Partner | Medical negligence

023 8071 8028

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Hear from our client, Gabriela

How our expert medical negligence team helped

Expert evidence obtained by our medical negligence team supported the fact that the third-degree tear should have been diagnosed after the forceps delivery and that it was a failure not to do so. Had an adequate inspection of our client’s perineum and rectum taken place following the forceps delivery, she would have been correctly diagnosed with a third-degree tear and she would have undergone prompt surgical repair.

After a denial of liability by the Defendant Hospital Trust, proceedings were issued and served in March 2021, witness statements exchanged, and evidence was served from experts in the specialties of obstetrics, colorectal medicine, psychiatry and care. A round table meeting was held in November 2022, but the case did not settle until some weeks after that, following continued negotiations.

A word from Gabriela

I highly recommend Maya Sushila as your solicitor for any medical negligence cases. Maya and her team at Moore Barlow are professional, sympathetic, and can really fight for you. I always felt like they updated me all the time with any important news and felt like they had my back 100% of the time. These cases are complex in nature and there is a lot that needs to be done, but the team is organised and helps you get things done no matter what. Thank you Maya and the team for helping me with my case, I would not have been able to do it without you.

Gabriela, Client

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How Moore Barlow can help

With a proven track record of successful medical negligence claims and achieving the maximum possible amount of compensation for our clients. You can be assured of receiving expert representation from our medical negligence lawyers who are considered leaders in the field of medical negligence law.

As one of the UK’s most experienced medical negligence law firms, we pride ourselves on working closely with our clients and their families, ensuring you are at the heart of the process and fully engaged in the decision making. We will guide you sensitively through the litigation process making what can be a stressful experience much easier to handle, whilst proactively progressing your compensation claim and maximising any compensation award.

We will ensure that you consistently receive the best practical support and legal advice needed to help you deal with the effects of medical negligence and any resulting injury, and any other associated concerns.

Hear from Maya – our lead solicitor on the case

I am so pleased that we managed to secure a substantial settlement for our client. Such cases take a heavy emotional toll on clients who are already having to come to terms with the symptoms of faecal urgency and incontinence. Helping clients to navigate the legal landscape whilst supporting them through a traumatic injury and recovery is what we do. Our client can now move on with her life and wants to become more involved as an advocate for a maternal injury charity (MASIC).

Maya Sushila, Partner

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