If your fourth degree tear was not diagnosed and repaired shortly after the delivery, you will be entitled to compensation for the damages you have incurred. Contact us today to find out more.
Missed 4th degree tear
A fourth degree tear is a perineal injury that can be sustained during a vaginal delivery. There are varying degrees of perineal injury, with a fourth degree tear being the most severe. It involves the perineum, internal anal sphincter and external anal sphincter.
After a vaginal delivery, a woman should be examined either by the attending midwife or registrar. This should include a digital rectal examination, whereby a finger is inserted into the rectum and a thumb into the vagina and a pin-rolling motion performed. This should enable the medical practitioner to identify any injuries to the anal sphincter, ensuring that a fourth degree tear does not go undiagnosed.
However, there are times when a fourth degree tear is missed. Usually this happens because:-
- Medical practitioners do not carry out an examination before discharging a patient from hospital;
- An examination is carried out, but the fourth degree tear is missed;
- An examination is carried out, but the fourth degree tear is mistaken for a more minor tear.
Compensation for a missed 4th degree tear
If you sustained a fourth degree tear during childbirth but the injury was not diagnosed and repaired shortly afterwards, you will be considered the victim of medical negligence. This is because any reasonably competent medical practitioner should be able to diagnose a fourth degree tear. A failure to do so is unacceptable and amounts to medical negligence.
As the victim of medical negligence, you are legally entitled to pursue a claim against the hospital at fault. If your missed 4th degree tear claim is successful, you will be awarded a sum of compensation that reflects the damages you have wrongfully incurred. This settlement will be made up of two elements:-
- General damages, which reflect the physical/emotional pain and suffering you have wrongfully endured.
- Special damages, which reflect the actual financial loss you and your partner have incurred.
Claiming for a missed 4th degree tear
To make a claim for a missed fourth degree tear, please get in touch with us today. We will put you through to a solicitor who specialises in birth injury claims. After a free initial consultation, a solicitor will be able to suggest if you are in a position to make a compensation claim.
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