If you are suffering with the appalling symptoms of a rectovaginal fistula, you may well be the victim of poor quality care. You might wish to consider making a claim for compensation.
A rectovaginal fistula following the vaginal birth of a child may develop for a couple of reasons, both of which might suggest that your medical professionals have not paid careful attention to your childbirth injuries.
Missed 4th degree tear
A 4th degree tear, suffered during vaginal childbirth, causes damage to the internal lining of the anal canal. If this injury is diagnosed and competently repaired shortly after the birth of the child, there is a good chance that the new mother will recover and retain control of her bowels.
If the medical professionals who attended the birth did not diagnose the injury, however, it is unlikely that the injury will be repaired and this can lead to an abnormal passage developing between the anus and the vagina, allowing wind and faeces to pass between the two.
This can be extremely difficult to resolve at a later date.
Unrepaired 4th degree tear
It is also possible that the 4th degree tear was diagnosed accurately but that the repair was not sufficiently skilled to achive a long-term good outcome.
Such an injury requires the attention of a highly-skilled surgeon, making use of the best techniques and materials in order to repair the full extent of the woman’s injury.
Anything less may lead to on-going incontinence and a claim for compensation for pain and suffering.
Missed rectal buttonhole tear
Occasionally, the lining of the anal canal may be damaged without the anal sphincter being injured. This is called a rectal buttonhole tear and it can also lead to the development of a fistula if it passes unnoticed and goes unrepaired.
A failure to diagnose and repair such an injury may be regarded as negligent and justify a compensation claim.
A woman who has given birth vaginally should undergo a thorough examination after the birth to look for signs of damage. This should include a digital, rectal examination to check for internal damage such as a 4thdegree tear or rectal buttonhole tear.
A failure to do so may be regarded as negligent if the woman in question goes on to suffer long-term damage.
Speak to a solicitor
If you are suffering appalling long-term bowel problems due to failure to diagnose or repair your anal injury, contact us to talk to a solicitor who specialises in perineal tear compensation claims.
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If you, or your family member, has suffered a birth injury tear, please call us now for free, no obligation advice on 0800 234 3300 (or from a mobile click to call 01275 334030) or complete our Free Online Enquiry.