Death of Young Mother of Three Could Have Been Avoided

Kate, a 34 year old mother of three, presented to A&E at Wrexham Maelor Hospital with a seven day history of diarrhoea, feeling sick and abdominal pain which had worsened in the last 24 hours. She was diagnosed with gastroenteritis (a treatable stomach virus).   

Whilst this settled, her observations revealed high blood pressure and she was prescribed Indapamide to combat this, despite her sodium levels being lower than the minimum required level of 133mmol/l for use of this drug.

Kate continued on Indapamide for five days and her sodium levels continued to fall. During this time her family expressed their concern about her behaviour. She was agitated, confused and disorientated. Despite this, there was a failure to identify the significance of the fall in sodium levels and her altered behaviour until she became unresponsive. Her condition was eventually escalated to the consultant and a CT head scan revealed extensive swelling and brain damage. Despite efforts to correct her sodium levels, Kate did not recover and tragically died on 1 March 2017.

The Trust’s Serious Incident Investigation Report revealed significant failings in care. Lanyon Bowdler were instructed by the family and liability was admitted in full in August 2021. 

Kate sadly left behind three children who are now being cared for by three different relatives in different homes. The claim was valued and a 6-figure settlement was achieved in early 2023. The High Court approved the settlement on 3 August 2023 and the money will be used to support the upbringing of the children. 

Quote from Laura Weir of Lanyon Bowdler:

“This is a truly tragic case and one that will stay with me forever. Having worked for the family for the last couple of years it is clear Kate was a wonderful mother and an active member of her local community. She is sorely missed by all she knew. I hope this settlement can secure her children’s futures in a way that she worked tirelessly to try and achieve during her lifetime.”