A new mother withstood pain in her vagina for five months after a 1-inch metal surgical needle was allegedly left inside her by an obstetrician during the natural birth of her baby girl.
Yin Shengmin, 30, is believed to have had the curved needle – known as a suture – stitched inside her after undergoing an episiotomy during childbirth in December 2019, leaving her with increasing pain and swelling on the left side of her vagina.
According to the National Health Service, the procedure involves making a surgical incision in the perineum – the area between the vagina and the anus – widening the vagina and allowing the baby to come through more easily.
It can prevent a tear in the vaginal wall and is used in one in seven deliveries in England, the NHS website says. The incision is then stitched up after labour.
Ms Yin’s daughter was born on 5th December at Northwest Women’s and Children’s Hospital in Xi’an, capital city of Shaanxi Province in north-western China.
She has been involved in a month-long discussion with the facility over the alleged blunder, which is, bizarrely, known in medical terms as ‘retaining’.
The 2.5-centimetre (1-inch) surgical suture was removed on 7th May at Yinchuan Liren Maternal Hospital in her hometown of Ningxia region, her recent doctor’s notes show.
Ms Yin said: “My baby was delivered at 1:42am on 5th December. I was discharged the next day because there was a bed shortage.
“Two weeks after my operation, I was still feeling discomfort, even though my doctor told me my scar would heal in seven days.
“I told her I wasn’t feeling well and asked her what was happening. She said it happens to some people who recover more slowly.
“Even when I went back for a follow-up, the doctor said everything was normal. She didn’t notice anything.
“I couldn’t touch the scar and it kept hurting, but I couldn’t go to any hospitals because of the pandemic.
“On 7th May, when my sister was doing a pregnancy check-up at Yinchuan Liren Maternal Hospital, I told her doctor that my scar was still hurting.
“She felt my scar and said there appeared to be something solid inside, but she couldn’t tell what it was.
“It hurt so much when it was being removed, I had to be anaesthetised.”
Northwest Women’s and Children’s Hospital have confirmed to local media outlets that it is processing Ms Yin’s claim.
But the new mum has accused her obstetrician and the hospital of failing to take responsibility.
She claimed: “After I contacted the doctor, I even flew back to Xi’an to meet her.
“She suggested I might have put the suture in myself, or maybe Yinchuan Liren Maternal Hospital put it in me.
“They keep asking me how much money I want. How is this about money? What does this have to do with money?
“Firstly, I want them to take responsibility for this.
“Second, I want the doctor to apologise to me in person.”
Ms Yin has yet to take legal action against the facility, but, according to reports, local courts would need to be involved should the final settlement exceed 20,000 RMB (2,240 GBP).
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