Learning from the Law. A review of 21 years of litigation for pain during caesarean section
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Abstract: The large majority of caesarean sections in the UK are now carried out under neuraxial anaesthesia. Although this technique is widely accepted as being the safest option in most circumstances, the use of regional anaesthesia increases the risk of patients experiencing intra-operative discomfort or pain. Pain during operative obstetric delivery is the commonest successful negligence claim relating to regional anaesthesia against obstetric anaesthetists in the UK. In the following article, using a database of over 360 cases spanning 21 years, we break down and examine the recurrent components of medicolegal claims concerning pain during caesarean section and consider how anaesthetists might avoid litigation.