If you sustained a third degree tear during the birth of your child, how will it affect you in later life?
Third degree tear complications
A third degree tear is a serious injury that can occur during a vaginal delivery. It involves a tear from the vaginal opening, down through the perineum and into the external anal sphincter. It must be repaired shortly after the delivery by an experienced surgeon.
Even if a third degree tear is repaired to a reasonable standard, there is the chance that complications will ensue. For example, a woman may experience ongoing pain, particularly during sexual intercourse. She may also suffer recurrent infections, faecal leakage, and incontinence of faeces and flatus.
These complications are much more likely if the tear is not diagnosed and repaired shortly after the birth. This will amount to medical negligence. Nevertheless, ongoing problems can happen even if a proper repair is performed.
Effects of a third degree tear in later life
The symptoms of a third degree tear may improve in the years following the birth, especially if a woman has further treatment such sacral nerve stimulation or physiotherapy.
However, problems can deteriorate in later life, particularly with the onset of the menopause. A woman may then find that her symptoms worsen and become harder to control. Experts suggest that such complications are difficult to treat in later life, and so medical care will largely focus upon the management of symptoms.
Again, complications of a third degree tear in later life are much more likely if the injury was not diagnosed and repaired shortly after the birth. This is because the wound will not have healed properly in the first instance, and it can be hard to perform an effective repair later on.
Claiming for third degree tear complications
If you have suffered third degree tear complications because of medical error, you could be entitled to pursue a medical negligence claim. To find out, you need to speak to a solicitor without delay. Legal action must be taken within three years of the event, so it is important not to delay when seeking advice. If you miss the date of limitation, which is usually three years after your child was born, you may not be able to pursue a claim. This applies even if you have a very strong case.
To find out more about claiming compensation for a third degree tear, please get in touch with us today.