Vaginal tears and other birth injuries are more common in certain hospitals
- Clinical Negligence
Women are more likely to suffer complications during birth in some hospitals than others according to a recent maternity services audit.
Severe third and fourth-degree vaginal tears, which are also known as obstetric anal sphincter injuries, occurred with one in 15 vaginal births in some units in 2015-2016.
The report showed variations in the experiences of women in the 149 NHS Trusts and boards which were audited.
The audit found around one in every 40 women suffered a haemorrhage during childbirth but some maternity units had a much higher rate of one in 20 women.
Reasons for the variations in women's injuries during childbirth could be due to the differences in the risk profile of the women being seen in the different units and how well doctors reported the issue.
Hannah Bottomley, clinical negligence solicitor at Potter Rees Dolan, said:
This fascinating study reflects on a number of differing trends between NHS Trusts and across countries but it is concerning to read that some Trusts are reporting double the number of injuries to women during labour.
Vaginal tears and severe post-partum haemorrhage can be serious medical conditions which can have lasting and devastating effects. The huge disparity in the percentage of women suffering from such conditions in some Trusts compared with others leads me to be concerned about poor practice.
If the increased number of injuries are due to a lack of awareness then I can only hope that this report encourages those with the highest incidents to consider their policy and procedures and make positive changes.
The specialist medical negligence solicitors at Potter Rees Dolan are here to help if mistakes by midwives or doctors led to you suffering a vaginal tear in childbirth. If you or a loved one have suffered a vaginal tear during child birth due to medical negligence then visit our dedicated page on vaginal tears and other birth injuries.
Hannah Bottomley is a clinical negligence solicitor here at Potter Rees Dolan. Should you have any queries about clinical negligence issues or indeed any other aspect of this article and wish to speak to Hannah or any other member of the team please contact us on 0161 237 5888 or email Hannah directly.