Obstetrics / Medical problems
Anaphylactic shock during labour
Ursula had an eventful first pregnancy. Induction of labour for post maturity was arranged in 23rd May 2007. Labour was established the next day after artificial rupture of membrane and Sytocinon infusion.The second stage of labour was detected at 6pm, but progress was slow. At 10pm Ursula was given an intravenous injection of Augmentin. She went into anaphylactic shock, causing hypoxia and cardiac arrest within minutes. Circulation was restored after 34 minutes, but by this time multi-organ damage had occured. She was maintained in the Intensive Care Unit for two days, but died on the 25th May. The baby was delivered immediately by Caesarean section, but was unfortunately stillborn. PMS was asked to assess whether an earlier Caesarean delivery could have prevented the deaths of both mother and child. The Expert Report concluded that there was evidence of gross negligence on behalf of the midwifery staff and Consultant Obstetrician. Fetal distress was obvious from 5pm, and the CTG remained pathological after that. No attempt was made to treat the fetal distress, nor was there a serious effort to delivery the baby. Had an earlier delivery been attempted, it is probable that both mother and child would have survived. The case settled, and Ursula's husband was compensated.
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