Copyright (c) 2012 Julie Glynn
A hysterectomy is a surgical procedure in which the womb, otherwise known as the uterus, is removed. It is commonly carried out to treat health issues such as heavy periods, chronic pelvic pain, fibroids, gynaecological cysts and cancer of the ovaries, womb, cervix or fallopian tubes.
The operation is major one, and carries a number of risks of which a woman should be fully informed well in advance of signing the consent form. Some of these risks include:-
* General anaesthetic risks;
* Vaginal problems;
* Ovary failure;
* Early menopause
* Injury to adjacent structures.
With regard to the final point – ‘injury to adjacent structures’ – this may involve accidental damage to internal organs such as the bladder. The reason why the bladder is at risk of injury at hysterectomy is because of its close proximity to the uterus and cervix. It does in fact lie in front of the cervix and vagina, and so must be surgically mobilised away from these structures during surgery. This will help prevent the bladder suffering any injuries – for example, a perforation caused by surgical instruments.
Bladder Injury at Hysterectomy: Is This Medical Negligence?
Bladder injury is therefore a recognised risk of hysterectomy surgery. It is not, however, particularly common, and has an incidence rate of less than 0.7%. When it does occur, it will not always amount to medical negligence, as it can happen even if the highest standard of care is given.
However, there are unfortunately occasions when bladder injury sustained during a hysterectomy will be the direct result of poor medical care. This may happen if the procedure was not performed to a standard expected of a reasonable competent gynaecologist, or if the bladder injury was not detected at the time of the operation. Either way, a negligent bladder injury will lead to various health complications for a patient, including:-
* A vesico-vaginal fistula;
* Prolonged catheterisation;
* Infection, including urinary tract infection;
* Problems with urination;
* Prolonged pain and recovery.
Contact a Solicitor Today.
If you have suffered a bladder injury during a hysterectomy which you suspect was the result of medical negligence, you need to contact a legal expert without delay. A medical negligence solicitor will be able to listen to the details of your treatment before suggesting whether the care provided fell below acceptable standards. If it is apparent that surgery did indeed fall below the standards expected of medical professionals, then it will be possible to make a claim. If successful, you will be awarded compensation for the pain, suffering acute financial loss you have incurred.