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Our Medical Negligence Services

Vasectomy and Failed Sterilisation Claims

Having a vasectomy or being sterilised is not a decision people make lightly - some people decide they do not want children or choose not to have any more. While these procedures have a high success rate, they aren’t without their risks and medical negligence can occur.

Medical negligence in these procedures can lead to an unwanted pregnancy – putting a huge financial and emotional strain on the families involved, regardless of whether they decide to continue with the pregnancy.

It is important to note: failed sterilisation and vasectomies aren’t always due to medical negligence. However, if an unplanned pregnancy happens shortly after the procedure, it could be down to this.

What Causes Sterilisation Negligence?

  • A poor consent procedure/failure to advise the patient of all associated risks
  • Failing to provide correct advice post-discharge (warn of risks associated with unprotected sex)
  • Adopting poor or incorrect sterilisation techniques
  • Failing to monitor signs of post-operative infection
  • Inadequate/incorrect application of sterilisation clips – ‘filshie’ clips/filshie clip migration

What Sterilisation Compensation Can You Claim?

Women can make a failed sterilisation claim if either they suffer a wrongful pregnancy or wrongful birth, depending on whether they decide to terminate or continue with the pregnancy.

Women can claim for:
  • Physical suffering from the pregnancy, labour and/or termination
  • Loss of earnings during the pregnancy and/or recovery period
  • Psychological distress associated with the failure
Men can make a claim for failed sterilisation if the surgery was performed negligently resulting in failure, or in the event that they are not provided with contraceptive advice upon their discharge. Both of which can result in unwanted pregnancy.

Men can claim for:
  • Cost of repeat surgery and the pain, suffering and recovery period associated with the same
  • Loss of earnings
  • Psychological distress linked to the negligence
However, claims cannot be made for compensation for the cost of raising the child, apart from exceptional circumstances such as where the child is born with a disability.

Men can also face problems when undergoing circumcision surgery whereby, albeit very rarely the procedure does not go to plan, resulting in a prolonged period of pain and suffering in addition to the potential need for corrective surgery.

Case Study: Medical Negligence Sterilisation

J v Abertawe Bro Morgannwg University Health Board

Unfortunately, the claimant’s sterilisation failed within 6 months of the procedure being performed. As a result, the claimant fell pregnant and suffered a miscarriage. The claimant fell pregnant once more and later delivered a healthy full-term baby.

Compensation was awarded for pain, suffering and psychological distress associated with the failed sterilisation procedure, in addition to the ordeal of having to undergo a further operation.

Damages were pleaded in excess of £12,000.000.

P v Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust

During a circumcision the claimant suffered a very traumatic event whereby a relatively inexperienced doctor accidently removed a section of vein rather than what was intended during surgery. This resulted in failure of the procedure alongside development of a very large haematoma (swollen blood clot) causing a prolonged period of pain and discomfort. Fortunately the claimant was made aware that the procedure, for obvious reasons had not been successful, however unfortunately required further surgery to correct the mistake.

Damages are anticipated to exceed £30,000.00

Do I Have a Claim for Negligent Sterilisation?

If you have had an unsuccessful vasectomy or sterilisation, then you may have a claim for compensation. Get in touch with our empathetic and knowledgeable medical negligence solicitors to learn more.
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Meet the Key Individuals



Sue Edwards
Sue Edwards
Partner
Solicitor

Head of Medical
Negligence and Personal
Injury Department
Cardiff Office


James Horsey
James Horsey
Solicitor

Personal Injury and
Medical Negligence
Cardiff Office


Amy Downey
Amy Downey
Legal Assistant

Personal Injury and
Medical Negligence


Robert Jones
Robert Jones
Legal Assistant

Personal Injury and
Medical Negligence
Cardiff Office


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Glendora Hendrickson
Personal Assistant

Personal Injury and
Medical Negligence
Cardiff Office


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