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Mistaken diagnosis of urinary tract infection as placental abruption death of a child



The Facts

The client was a 24 year old woman who was six months pregnant when she went in to hospital with abdominal pains.

The consultant she saw wrongly diagnosed an abruption of her placenta. As a result an emergency caesarean section was performed. Tragically, the baby died soon after delivery from respiratory distress syndrome.

The mother’s abdominal pains had in fact been caused by a urinary tract infection, and the emergency caesarean section had been completely unnecessary.

In addition the mother suffered from psychiatric injuries both because of her baby’s death and because of how badly events after her baby’s death were handled by the hospital.


  • That the medical staff were negligent in diagnosing a urinary tract infection in the mother as a placental abruption and performing an emergency caesarean section.
  • That this mistake caused the baby’s death from respiratory distress syndrome.


The claim was settled by agreement with the defendant hospital trust, with the client receiving £40,000 in damages.