Court of Protection: NHS Trust asks judge to rule on hysterectomy for woman with serious mental health condition

 

A woman with a serious mental health condition should undergo a hysterectomy after being handcuffed and escorted by four guards to the operating table, an NHS Trust told a High Court Judge on Monday.

The woman, who is in her thirties and for legal reasons can only be named as 'Ms I,' is being held in a secure mental health facility. She has been suffering from a significantly prolapsed uterus for the last six months.

Doctors believe that as well as causing her pain, it has further impacted on her mental state. Justice Peter Jackson, who heard the Court of Protection case in London's Royal Courts of Justice, said he understood that Ms I was happy to have the operation but that since she is “obviously quite seriously psychiatrically unwell” she cannot give consent.

The barrister for the NHS trust, Parishil Patel said that “because of her mental state in relation to the risk posed to others,” the trust propose that she is “escorted by four female escorts and she will be restrained at all times during transfer and when she's at the surgery, other than when she's unconscious during the operation.”

Speaking of Ms I's feelings about the procedure, Mr Patel said: “She wishes to have the operation because she is distressed by the uterus prolapse that's happening between her legs”. Despite Ms I's willingness to undergo the procedure, lawyers argued she should be given a general anaesthetic to protect her and those treating her from being harmed if she became distressed on the operating table.

Other conservative methods of treatment, such as using a vaginal pessary to block a prolapse, have failed and doctors at the hospital believe a hysterectomy is the only option. The Official Solicitor, acting on behalf of the patient, asked on Monday for more time to discover whether any less invasive procedures would solve the problem.

An operation has been booked for Thursday and the judge will decide on Wednesday whether it can go ahead.

In a move which will be welcomed by campaigners for transparency in the court, Justice Jackson criticised lawyers for making it difficult for journalists to report the case properly. The Court of Protection, which makes health and welfare decisions on behalf of those deemed to lack capacity, has faced fierce criticism for being too secretive.

Justice Jackson said lawyers should have sent out an order to the press ahead of the case detailing what reporting restrictions were being applied for to limit reporting. The hearing was in open court, due to the serious medical treatment proposed, but “The media should have been notified in the normal way in good time,” he said.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Life and Style
Angel Di Maria is shown the red card
tech
Sport
Roger Federer after his win over Tomas Berdych
sport
Life and Style
News in briefs: big pants in 'Bridget Jones's Diary'
fashionBig knickers are back
Sport
James Milner is set to sign for Liverpool this week despite rival interest from Arsenal
sportReds baulk at Benteke £32.5m release clause
News
The controversial Motor Neurone Disease Association poster, featuring sufferer Michael Smith, has drawn a series of angry complaints
newsThis one has been criticised for its 'threatening tone'
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Inside Sales - OTE to £45,000

£25000 - £45000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: We are a leading supplier of bu...

Recruitment Genius: Installation Engineer - Driveway

£28000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This innovative, fast growing f...

Recruitment Genius: Junior Project Manager - Technical

£30000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Our client is looking for a Jun...

Recruitment Genius: Web Developer

£25000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a fantastic opportunity...

Day In a Page

On your feet! Spending at least two hours a day standing reduces the risk of heart attacks, cancer and diabetes, according to new research

On your feet!

Spending half the day standing 'reduces risk of heart attacks and cancer'
Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Reds baulk at Christian Benteke £32.5m release clause
With scores of surgeries closing, what hope is there for the David Cameron's promise of 5,000 more GPs and a 24/7 NHS?

The big NHS question

Why are there so few new GPs when so many want to study medicine?
Big knickers are back: Thongs ain't what they used to be

Thongs ain't what they used to be

Big knickers are back
Thurston Moore interview

Thurston Moore interview

On living in London, Sonic Youth and musical memoirs
In full bloom

In full bloom

Floral print womenswear
From leading man to Elephant Man, Bradley Cooper is terrific

From leading man to Elephant Man

Bradley Cooper is terrific
In this the person to restore our trust in the banks?

In this the person to restore our trust in the banks?

Dame Colette Bowe - interview
When do the creative juices dry up?

When do the creative juices dry up?

David Lodge thinks he knows
The 'Cher moment' happening across fashion just now

Fashion's Cher moment

Ageing beauty will always be more classy than all that booty
Thousands of teenage girls enduring debilitating illnesses after routine school cancer vaccination

Health fears over school cancer jab

Shock new Freedom of Information figures show how thousands of girls have suffered serious symptoms after routine HPV injection
Fifa President Sepp Blatter warns his opponents: 'I forgive everyone, but I don't forget'

'I forgive everyone, but I don't forget'

Fifa president Sepp Blatter issues defiant warning to opponents
Extreme summer temperatures will soon cause deaths of up to 1,700 more Britons a year, says government report

Weather warning

Extreme summer temperatures will soon cause deaths of up to 1,700 more Britons a year, says government report
LSD: Speaking to volunteer users of the drug as trials get underway to see if it cures depression and addiction

High hopes for LSD

Meet the volunteer users helping to see if it cures depression and addiction
German soldier who died fighting for UK in Battle of Waterloo should be removed from museum display and given dignified funeral, say historians

Saving Private Brandt

A Belgian museum's display of the skeleton of a soldier killed at Waterloo prompts calls for him to be given a dignified funeral