Archive for December, 2015

Claim Settled for Woman with Medical Instrument Phobia

December 17th, 2015 | By licnewsadmin

A female patient has settled her claim for the failure to acknowledge her medical instruments phobia after metal clips were inserted during a thyroidectomy, despite her expressing that this was against her wishes before the procedure.

Sylvia Ramsay, aged sixty-six, required an operation on her thyroid in 2010. She was to undergo the procedure at the Spire Roding Private Hospital in Essex, before which she informed the consultant surgeon Akinyede Ojo that she had a specific phobia of medical instruments and other surgical items being left inside her body. Having sought advice from another consultant, Mrs Ramsay informed Dr Ojo that she knew it was possible to carry out a thyroidectomy without the insertion of metal clips. As such, she made a request to Dr Ojo that he refrain from using such clips, as well as asking that he use dissolvable stitches.

After the procedure, Mrs Ramsay believed that Dr Ojo had heeded to her request. Yet when she saw another consultant a year later regarding difficulties she had breathing, an x-ray was carried out that revealed that twenty-five metal clips had been inserted into her throat. Mrs Ramsay commented to a local paper that “I can only explain the feeling as similar to when you have a near miss in a car accident, that jolt of panic, followed by feeling out of control”. In 2013, a private clinic removed the clips, though this was without the help of Mrs Ramsay’s GP and significant therapy and distress on the patient’s part.

Mrs Ramsay sought legal counsel, after which she made a claim against Dr Ojo and the Spire Roding Hospital for the consultant’s failure to acknowledge his patient’s phobia of medical instruments. Dr Ojo denied the allegation of negligence, saying that the situation came about through a misunderstanding. Yet after protracted negotiations, a settlement was decided without an admission of liability. “I know this is not a rational reaction but it is not something I can control,” Mrs Ramsay stated after the announcement of the settlement. “It’s like putting an arachnophobe into a room full of spiders and telling them not to be so silly.”


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