Belfast Telegraph

Probe into Co Armagh's death during routine surgery adjourned for month

BY JOANNE SWEENEY

The family of a young Co Armagh woman is still waiting to find out the truth of how a minor operation ended in her death.

The inquest into how the 38-year-old mother-of-two died after an operation to remove a fibroid from her womb has been adjourned until October 15.

It's the latest agonising twist for her family, who have sat every day at the complex hearing which had been originally planned to finish last week.

Coroner John Leckey agreed to adjourn the inquest for a month after the hearing failed to hear any further new evidence since Monday because of confidential legal consultations.

Lynn Lewis, from Ahorey, Co Armagh, died from a combination of haemorrhage and hyponatremia after the operation at the Ulster Independent Clinic, Belfast, on July 7, 2011.

Last week the inquest heard that once the operation began on Mrs Lewis, it became clear that the benign fibroid was much larger than initially thought, and that the operation would take longer than expected.

It has been suggested that it was the combination of a low blood level from bleeding from a laceration in her cervix and the absorption of the irrigation fluid glycine that led to the fatal and sudden deterioration in the tragic woman's condition.

Despite concerted attempts for over 90 minutes to resuscitate her after she suffered a cardiac arrest, Mrs Lewis died from these complications.

Further new expert medical evidence will be introduced when the inquest resumes again on October 15.

Consultant obstetrician and gynaecologist Prof McClure and anaesthetist Damien Hughes have still to give evidence.

STORY SO FAR

The inquest so far has heard evidence of several key complications during Mrs Lewis' operation to have a fibroid removed from her uterus. These include serious internal bleed during the operation, the monitoring and recording of fluid management levels and whether or not an alternative procedure should have been considered by the surgeon.

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