New mother loses finger – Doc & Hospital lose the case

  • Posted on: October 08, 2018

Rinki was pregnant and was taken to Nipun hospital for the delivery of her baby. A C-section was performed by Dr. Puneeta and a healthy baby girl was delivered.

The new mother was quite excited at the prospect of raising the new born and was expecting to be discharged from the hospital soon. But that was not to be. The vigo inserted in the wrist of her left hand caused swelling. Ointment was applied and medicines were prescribed but to no avail. Soon after, the patient’s hand developed ischemia and partial gangrene. One of the fingers of Rinki’s left hand had to be amputated.

The joy of giving birth to a baby girl was overshadowed by this unfortunate incident. Sensing something amiss in the treatment, Rinki and her family approached the State Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission, Uttar Pradesh and levelled allegations upon the doctor and hospital.

It was alleged that despite complaining of several pain in the hand neither the doctor nor the hospital staff paid any attention. They simply applied ointment Sumac, but that didn’t alleviate the pain, claimed Rinki. Losing part of a hand, especially for a new mother is a traumatic experience, and I must get justice, concluded Rinki.

The doctor and the hospital had several facts to present in defence. It was stated that the patient was suffering from Hypothyroidism and Reynaud’s disease and the effect of these worsened due to extreme cold weather that was prevalent during her treatment. It was further stated that a Doppler test was also conducted which didn’t report anything out of ordinary. How can we be blamed for this unfortunate incident, asked the doctor and hospital.

The Commission relied on voluminous medical records and medical literature before delivering the ruling. At the outset, it was observed that the Doppler test reported ‘normal arterial and venous flow is seen in the vessels of the left upper limb upto the level of the wrist. Doppler study of the hand and the digits could not be done to focal lesions and pain’ ¬ - key words being focal lesions and pain. It was further observed that due to thrombophlebitis, the patient developed severe oedema which was due to effects of multiple drug injections and lack of post-operative care.

Most importantly, the Commission observed, the patient was admitted with no problems of the hand and the complications occurred only after insertion of vigo

Dr. Puneeta and Nipun hospital were ordered to pay seven lakh rupees as compensation to the patient.

Source: Order pronounced by State Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission, Uttar Pradesh on 11th July, 2018.