£325k payout for woman after botched surgery at Dewsbury and District Hospital

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A WOMAN has won a £325,000 payout after an operation at Dewsbury and District Hospital left her with lifelong health problems.

The 51-year-old, who does not want to be named, needed emergency surgery in May 2004 when an abdominal hysterectomy permanently damaged her bowel.

She spent almost a month in hospital, needed reconstructive surgery and was unable to work.

“It wrecked my life totally,” she said. “My two children were grown up and I was ready to start my life again. I had everything planned for after the operation.

“I went in on Wednesday and should’ve come out by Sunday. But within a few days, I was more or less at death’s door.”

At first, staff put the pain down to irritable bowel syndrome but it soon became clear that the woman’s bowel had been damaged and a colostomy was performed.

The woman, who lives in Earlsheaton, said: “After the second operation, I was on life support for a couple of days. They had taken away part of my bowel and I had a wound on my stomach the size of a dinner plate. When I came round it was quite a shock.

“The second surgeon and the nurses were brilliant though. Not all the hospital is bad.”

In January 2006, she had the first of two reverse colostomy operations before surgery for scarring on her stomach.

She said she had lost all her confidence and could still only walk short distances.

“It’s been devastating,” she said. “I have no social life. I couldn’t go out for so long.”

But she said she was determined to hold the Mid Yorkshire Hospitals Trust, which runs Dewsbury hospital, to account.

She said: “I knew it shouldn’t have happened. I said to my solicitor at Switalskis that I would go all the way. I didn’t want them to do this to anybody else. I wanted to show others they can fight.”

The trust agreed to pay £325,000 in damages after admitting liability.

The woman said: “It’s been a big weight lifted. I can’t forget it but I can push it to the back of my mind. It’s just moving forward a little bit at a time now.”

Dr Mahesh Nagar, the Trust’s associate medical director, said he was pleased an agreement had been reached.

“We would like to again offer our apologies,” he said. “Complications can arise following any surgical procedure and we would always look at what improvements could be made to prevent something similar happening again.”