Stoke & Staffordshire

Rugeley gastric bypass surgery woman 'left with tubing in body'

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Media captionHelen Reynolds said she was taking painkillers "for quite a few months"

A law firm says it is pursuing legal action against a surgeon after a woman was left with 2.5in (6.35cm) of tubing in her after gastric bypass surgery.

Irwin Mitchell said Helen Reynolds, of Rugeley, Staffordshire, was admitted to Spire Manchester Hospital last year.

Mrs Reynolds, 50, said she was then in pain for a year and had to have further surgery to have the tubing removed.

Spire Healthcare said patients' welfare and safety was its top priority but was unable to comment on individual cases.

Mrs Reynolds was admitted to the hospital in January last year but two months after surgery she "started to suffer from excruciating pain", Irwin Mitchell said.

It said her GP diagnosed cysts on her ovaries and further to this, a scan in May this year revealed an object inside her.

Mrs Reynolds told the BBC she had arthritis in her knees and back and paid for gastric bypass surgery so she could lose weight and ease the condition.

She said following the surgery she was taking painkillers "for quite a few months" and could not leave the house because of pains in her stomach.

'Never event'

Speaking through the law firm, she said: "I am flabbergasted at how this has happened to me.

"I suffered for months and months with excruciating pain in my stomach, which I can only describe as like labour pains."

Irwin Mitchell said to have the tubing inside her for a year constituted "a 'never event' according to national Patient Safety Guidelines which recognise that such occurrences are unacceptable and completely preventable if the appropriate procedures have been implemented".

The law firm said it was at the investigation stage, compiling medical evidence.

In a statement, Spire Healthcare said it took the responsibility of the welfare and safety of patients "very seriously" and "set extremely high standards" across every aspect of its hospitals.

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