Sunday 25 February 2018

Scan revealed 'possible' pregnancy in womb after earlier 'ectopic diagnosis' - inquiry hears

Laura Esmonde Picture: Caroline Quinn
Laura Esmonde Picture: Caroline Quinn

Alan O'Keeffe

A Medical Council inquiry into a claim that a woman received a wrong diagnosis of an ectopic pregnancy was informed today that a scan later revealed a "possible" pregnancy in the womb.

Mother-of-three Laura Esmonde (38), from near Tipperary town, was claimed to have been wrongly diagnosed to have an ectopic pregnancy, which is a unviable pregnancy outside the womb, by a consultant obstetrician and gynaecologist at South Tipperary General Hospital in Clonmel  on January 6, 2013.

As a result, she was informed of the serious health risk of an ectopic pregnancy and was advised to take the drug methotrexate which stops cells from growing. She was given two doses of the drug within a fortnight and it was stated she had a reported miscarriage on February 2.

Dr Siobhan Corcoran, a specialist obstetrics registrar at Cork University Hospital in 2013, said in a statement read to the inquiry yesterday that she performed a scan on Ms Esmonde on January 26, 2013, which showed the "possible" presence of an intra-uterine gestational sac, which would mean a pregnancy in the womb, or else the presence of a "pseudo sac."

She also detected "a mass" on the right-hand side of her pelvis and noted there was a query in the medical notes whether this was part of, or separate from, the right-hand ovary.

A consultant who was alleged to have made a mis-diagnosis of an ectopic pregnancy in the Clonmel hospital was referred to only as 'Doctor A' in the inquiry proceedings.

Ms Esmonde had been admitted to Clonmel suffering pain from a blood clot in the leg.  While at the hospital, she was informed that she was pregnant but that it appeared to be an ectopic pregnancy.

Nurse Maria Carrigan, a midwife and staff nurse at the Clonmel hospital, said she was present when a scan was conducted on January 8. She took notes based on what Doctor A stated after the scan procedure. He had stated that the uterus was empty and that it was "a probable" ectopic pregnancy.

The inquiry continues on Thursday

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