Coffs Harbour Lady Wins $350,000 Settlement for Gynaecologist Failure to Warn

PUBLISHED 17 Aug 2017

Our client was a lady from Coffs Harbour who was referred by her local general practitioner to a gynaecologist for treatment following an abnormal pap smear. The gynaecologist conducted numerous medical examinations on our client within three consultations over a 9 month period. Consequently, the gynaecologist advised our client that a cone biopsy procedure should be performed, and that his assistant, the Defendant, would perform the operation.

Following that, the Defendant performed the cone biopsy on our client. Following the surgery, our client was advised that she needed a hysterectomy and bladder repair surgery with a mesh (i.e. the mesh would support the prolapsed bladder), and that the hysterectomy and bladder repair be done at the same time.

However, the Defendant did not advise our client of other options available and the consequences that may flow from the operation. Despite numerous requests to discuss further, the Defendant did not respond. Subsequently, feeling the need to act, our client agreed to the operation.

The Defendant used a nylon mesh to support the prolapsed bladder, and after the operation, our client suffered discomfort in the area. She suffered severe post-operative infection, but no advice or action was given. She sought treatment from her GP, and the GP found that the nylon mesh was frayed and was causing a gaping internal, infected wound. Additional surgery was required to cut away the mesh, 2 of them was done without anaesthesia.

As a consequence, the Plaintiff sustained injuries to her bladder, her vagina and ongoing pain in the groin and lower abdominal region. She had to undergo physiotherapy and she suffered immense psychological injury.

Upon receiving the matter, Mr Abboud took the matter on a ‘no-win, no-fee’ basis. He and his specialist medical negligence team quickly sought the opinion of highly regarded doctors and experts and paid for all the upfront fees for these experts. To establish liability and damage, Mr Abboud and his team sought the report of an expert gynaecologist , occupational therapist and psychologist at no upfront cost to our client.

Mr Abboud and his team, as well as an expert barrister, pursued the matter progressively and brought the matter for mediation. The matter eventually settled for around $350,000.00, and while we understand that money will not be truly able to compensate the pain and suffering he underwent, we hope this will assist with the moving on with his life, and we trust that this settlement will assist him in increasing his quality of life.

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