Woman dies during caesarean operation

For further information, contact Melissa Maimann at Essential Birth Consulting. It's often said that caesareans carry higher risks than vaginal birth. In the case below, it seems that an unnecessary induction led to an unnecessary caesarean during which the woman died. So it would appear that the woman died unnecessarily.


A nurse who spent years undergoing IVF treatment died after suffering brain damage giving birth and never saw the baby she had longed for ...

Joanne Lockham had an emergency Caesarean operation to deliver her son but surgeons accidentally starved her brain of oxygen for as long as 30 minutes, it was claimed.

Mrs Lockham, 45 ... had been through several rounds of failed IVF treatment when she finally became pregnant. Her baby was six days overdue when she went to Stoke Mandeville Hospital in Aylesbury to have labour induced on 9 October 2007.

Coroner Richard Hulett told the inquest in Amersham today that surgeons had intended to give Mrs Lockham an epidural but because her labour was taking so long it was decided at 6pm to give her a general anaesthetic.

Mrs Lockham sobbed to midwives as she was told of the change of plans but was assured that she would soon be holding her first child in her arms. However, problems arose in the operation theatre after Mrs Lockham went under anaesthetic.

The jury heard that three attempts were made to give her oxygen via a tube before it was eventually believed to have been successful.

However, within moments of the birth, Mrs Lockham suffered a cardiac arrest.

Asked if the intubation had been successful [the doctor] added: "From my point of view, it was possibly not correct."

Mrs Lockham was transferred to the hospital's intensive care unit but was certified dead two days later after sustaining irreversible brain damage.

Her husband ... is now bringing up their son ... alone at their home ...

A post-mortem examination concluded that she died as a result of a lack of oxygen to the brain resulting in cardio-respiratory arrest, with a second cause as multi organ failure.

Melissa Maimann, Essential Birth Consulting 0400 418 448