20-year-old woman died following routine appendix operation

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An inquest has begun into the death of a 20-year-old woman who died from sepsis following a routine appendix operation.

Chloe Rideout first attended Derriford Hospital in Plymouth after she had been experiencing severe stomach pains. She lay on the floor in A&E for five hours before she was eventually admitted to a ward. It took a week for doctors to tell her that she may have appendicitis.

Chloe’s mother, Mrs Rideout, was worried about the delays in her daughter’s treatment and said that sepsis was never mentioned. Her family felt as though the doctors were trying to discharge her as quickly as possible and described how Chloe “felt like she was going to die” the day after she was sent home. Mrs Rideout called 111 and a nurse was called out to the house, however only 10 minutes after she had left did Mrs Rideout have to call 999 because she was so worried about Chloe’s condition.  After three telephone calls and a 90 minute wait later an ambulance eventually arrived and took Chloe to the Royal Cornwall Hospital.

It was at this hospital that Chloe’s family said she felt unsafe and was being looked after by ‘an incompetent nurse who did not want to be doing her job.’ Chloe underwent several operations but by this time her kidneys had begun to fail and her brain was starved of blood and oxygen. She died on 20 October 2018.

A post-mortem exam found that Chloe died of multi-organ failure due to sepsis and a perforated appendix.

The inquest continues.

Emily Legge, a medical negligence specialist at Ashtons Legal, comments: “It is concerning that Chloe’s symptoms were not taken seriously and that she was discharged from hospital despite complaining of such severe pain.  This highlights the importance of listening to a patient’s concerns and reacting accordingly.  It is crucial that patients feel safe whilst in the care of the hospital.”


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