Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 27 November 2014

Fatal blood clot wasn’t detected, inquest hears

A blood clot that caused the death of a woman two weeks after she gave birth was not detected by radiologists following a hospital scan, an inquest has heard.

Terri-Louise Moore (34) died at Belfast City Hospital on December 11, 2007 a fortnight after delivering a healthy baby girl in Antrim Area Hospital.

A post-mortem examination found the cause of death to be a blockage of the main artery of the lung due to thrombosis of the right ovarian vein, and septicaemia. Both the Northern and Belfast Health Trusts have accepted the mother-of-three died from blood clots on the lung.

The inquest is to establish whether the blood clots could have been detected earlier and, if so, could her life have been saved.

Yesterday the inquest was told the Ballymena woman was admitted to hospital on November 26, 2007 after going into early labour as well as complaining of abdominal pain. She then began developing a high temperature.

Her husband Mark told the inquest how “infrequently” his wife had been checked by nurses on the ward hours following the birth.

He also said that when his wife raised this with staff, a ward sister told her: “You don't get one-to-one care in here, love.”

Dr Gillian McKeown, who was treating Mrs Moore at the time, told the hearing two days after Mrs Moore had been admitted she performed a test on the foetus and discovered its heart rate had increased.

An emergency Caesarean was performed and Mrs Moore’s daughter was delivered on November 28.

Dr McKeown told the court she next saw Mrs Moore that night at around 8.20pm she was still complaining of abdominal pain. She said she suspected a distended abdomen and ordered a CT scan.

Dr George Gilpin, a consultant radiologist at Antrim Area Hospital, told the hearing he carried out a CT scan on Mrs Moore on November 29. He explained he had been asked to look for any bowel obstructions after the patient had been complaining of abdominal pain.

Once the scan came back he consulted with a colleague Dr Colin Ng and both concluded they did not “recognise anything”.

The inquest continues.

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