If you did not have an examination after giving birth, meaning your third degree tear was missed, you will be considered the innocent victim of medical negligence. This means you could be entitled to claim compensation for the unnecessary pain and suffering you have endured.
The importance of an examination
After giving birth vaginally, a woman must have a thorough examination before she leaves hospital. This can be performed by a midwife or a doctor. It must include:-
- A visual assessment of the genital area;
- A vaginal examination;
- A digital rectal examination.
It is vitally important all three stages are undertaken. This is especially true of the digital rectal examination, as this is the only way to detect third and fourth degree tears, where the injury extends to the anal sphincter. Often the tissue will look intact, but underneath there is a significant laceration; this means a visual assessment alone simply will not suffice.
Failing to carry out an examination
It is now standard practice to examine all women who have had a vaginal birth. A failure to carry out such an examination will, therefore, amount to a substandard level of care.
Other times, however, a woman will leave hospital with a third or fourth degree tear that has been entirely missed by medical professionals. She will go on to develop problems such as pain, the inability to control wind and episodes of faecal leakage or incontinence. This will normally prompt further investigations and, eventually, the accurate diagnosis of a third or fourth degree tear.
Nevertheless, this injury could have been detected shortly after the birth with an examination. This would have prevented further pain, suffering and embarrassment, and would have meant the injury was treated immediately, ensuring a greater chance of recovery. Indeed, if a repair is delayed it may not be entirely effective and a woman can be left with ongoing problems.
Missed third degree tear
If you did not have an examination after giving birth and you were later diagnosed with a third degree tear, get in touch with us today. It is highly likely that you are the victim of medical negligence, meaning you are legally entitled to claim compensation for the pain, suffering and financial loss wrongfully incurred.
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