LETTER : Birthing pains

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Your article "Gynaecology facing record legal actions" (2 March) was misdirected. The inclusion of a list of apparently frivolous claims suggests they arise from women who are deluded or ill-advised. This is a dated and insulting approach: the real story is that medical practice in this area is sorely in need of reform.

Miscarriages in particular are notoriously mismanaged. My own experience ranged from rudeness to cruelty. The obstetrician who gave me a painful uterine exam did so without ever acknowledging me and then sent a junior doctor to tell me that labour would have to be induced. The induction took place without painkillers for most of the night, despite my screams. Communication with medical staff was appalling and it is hard to think of the last time I was so laughably patronised.

Perhaps your next article could include examples in which women's unborn babies died unnecessarily, or where their reproductive future was jeop- ardised through carelessness, or where they were simply treated with disregard.

Susan Weinandy-Way

Old Heathfield, East Sussex

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