Clinical Negligence & Catastrophic Injury Solicitors
Hospital failings led to death of Antiques Roadshow expert.
Neglect and gross failure by hospital staff to quickly attempt resuscitation contributed to the death of a TV Antiques Roadshow expert, an inquest has ruled.
Alice Gibson-Watt, 34, died in 2012 from a brain injury caused by a cardiac arrest, the inquest jury at West London Coroner's Court concluded.
A week earlier, Alice Gibson-Watt had been restrained by police and ambulance staff in a case of post-partum psychosis, a month after giving birth to her first child but the coroner ruled that the use of restraint was not a factor in her death.
The inquest heard that Alice Gibson-Watt was admitted to A&E at Chelsea and Westminster Hospital following the psychotic episode and then taken to the Lakeside Mental Health Unit in West Middlesex Hospital.
On November 16 Mrs Gibson-Watt, a jewellery specialist for Sotheby's, had a cardiac arrest after which a nurse checked and found no pulse, the inquest heard.
Her heart was recorded as restarted at 03:48, after emergency paramedics had used a defibrillator.
She was then moved to a life support machine at King's College Hospital in London, but died on 20 November after a brain scan pronounced her "life extinct.”
Doctors giving evidence at the inquest said that, if there had been a proper response to the cardiac arrest, the brain injury that ultimately caused her death could have been avoided.
Her husband, Anthony Gibson-Watt, had called 999 after his wife started screaming, wailing and crawling around on all fours on 13 November.
He told the inquest that she was suffering delusions that their daughter had died.
Postpartum psychosis is a serious mental illness that can severely alter someone's thinking, emotions and behavior and affects around one in 1,000 women after they have a baby.
The illness tends to occur within the first two weeks after giving birth, but it can start later. The main symptoms are hallucinations and delusions.
Experts don't know why it occurs in some women but fluctuations in hormones and changing sleep patterns may play a role.
Women are more likely to develop postpartum psychosis if another member of their family has also suffered from the illness.