Settlement reached following the woman's death 14 days after giving birth

The family of a 22 year old woman who died 14 days after giving birth have received £390,000. 

The woman, known only as Ms D, went into labour in the early hours of 7 December 2009 and was admitted to Hillingdon Hospital in London.

During the course of the day and into the evening she became increasingly unwell and developed a very high temperature, she was shaking and had a very raised pulse rate. Ms D complained to staff that she was having difficulty breathing.

She was given intravenous fluids but it wasn’t until after midnight that she was given intravenous antibiotics.

An emergency Caesarean Section was performed and the baby was delivered at 01.45 hours on 8 December 2009.

Following the delivery Ms D was transferred to the recovery area where she continued to have a high temperature, raised pulse, and was drowsy.

At around 05.00, her respiratory rate increased, her conscious level had fallen and she was recorded as looking unwell. 

At 08.00 hours she was hypothermic.  At 09.10 hours she was bleeding from her gums and she complained of dizziness.

At 09.45 hours blood samples were obtained, the results of which were grossly abnormal. 

At 11.48 hours she collapsed.  She was found to be pale, drowsy, disorientated and very cold. 

At long last a senior doctor saw her and blood and blood products were administered together with further antibiotics. 

At 16.30 hours, she was transferred to the intensive care unit where a diagnosis of severe sepsis was made. 

Her condition then remained stable until 14 December when it deteriorated due to the onset of infection with invasive aspergillus.  She died fourteen days later leaving a young daughter and partner.

Olive Lewin from the medical negligence team at Leigh Day said, who represented Mrs D’s family, said:

“This was a very sad case involving the death of a much loved wife and daughter, and sadly a daughter who will never know her mother.”