A hospital has admitted liability after a routine operation left a schoolgirl paralysed from the waist down.
Sophie Tyler, now aged 17, from south Wales will spend the rest of her life in a wheelchair after medical negligence from a spinal anaesthetic was left in too long following surgery at Birmingham Children’s Hospital to remove gallstones.
Sophie was admitted to the hospital in May 2008 and though the operation was a success, the epidural to control pain was left in too long and it caused permanent damage to her spinal cord. The painkilling infusion was left in place for two days despite Sophie complaining of numbness in both her legs and being unable to move her feet. An MRI scan later revealed that the anaesthetic had entered her spinal cord and had damaged the membranes, leaving her paralysed.
The children’s hospital has now accepted liability which may now lead to a full settlement providing financial support to Sophie for the rest of her life. Dr Vin Diwakar, chief medical officer at Birmingham Children’s Hospital said that the hospital was deeply sorry for the distress caused and added: “The care we provided fell below our usual high standards and since then we have implemented a whole series of changes to try to ensure that this never happens again.”