A new mother has endured crippling pain after a suture needle was left inside her uterus following cesarean section surgery.
Nineteen-year-old Thi Nguyen gave birth to her son, Vincent, at Fairfield Hospital in Sydney’s west on Wednesday.
But following her operation, she was forced to go straight back under the knife so a specialist doctor could retrieve a small needle left behind by the previous operating team, Nine News reports.
The new mother’s husband, Steven Nguyen, said he was kept in the dark throughout the procedure, complaining that none of the doctors communicated with him over what had occurred.
‘No one told me anything,’ he said, with him forced to wait for Thi to inform him of the situation herself.
Mr Nguyen said friends had come to welcome the arrival of his new son, and he eventually asked at reception for an update on his wife’s condition.
‘I’ve received an apology from the specialist only, but it wasn’t the specialist’s fault, she was the one who fixed it. But the doctors; no word.’
Mrs Nguyen is Vietnamese and therefore ineligible to have her medical expenses covered by Medicare.
And Mr Nguyen, an apprentice refrigeration mechanic, was understandably frustrated, saying: ‘She could have easily recovered a lot quicker, but…it’s a mess.’
Thi Nguyen was left in crippling pain after a needle was left inside her uterus following cesarean section surgery to deliver her son, Vincent
The 19-year-old gave birth to her son, Vincent (above), at Fairfield Hospital in Sydney’s west on Wednesday. But her husband was kept in the dark over her going straight back into theatre
The South Western Sydney Local Health District has released a statement which clarified that the cause of the incident was in fact a product fault, and not a clinician error.
In relation to Mrs Nguyen’s case, it said: ‘we apologise if our communication was inadequate and we are currently reviewing this as a matter of priority.’
But the incident wasn’t an isolated, with a similar situation occurring the following day to another new mother at Fairfield.
Unlike Mrs Nguyen, the suture needle was not left inside the patient.
The hospital’s Chief Executive and Director of Medical Services Amanda Larkin explained: ‘There was a following incident the next day, we then were made aware that potentially there was an issue with the product, that’s when we took it off the shelf.’
Mr Nguyen complained that none of the doctors communicated with him over what had happened to his wife following the birth of his son
Doctor Harry Doan argued the incident could happen ‘at any particular time, to any particular surgeon’ regardless of their experience.
The product has been made unavailable to hospitals in the South Western Sydney Local Health District, and both incidents have been reported to the Therapeutic Goods Administration.
The Clinical Excellence Commission was also made aware and has since issued a safety alert across the State to have the ‘identified batch’ removed.
Fairfield has reportedly said it is open to any claims for compensation from Mr and Mrs Nguyen.
The problem product has been removed from shelves, and an investigation into the incidents has been launched