Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Mother of Quads Wins [Pounds Sterling]1 Million over Fertility Treatment

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Mother of Quads Wins [Pounds Sterling]1 Million over Fertility Treatment

Article excerpt

Byline: STANDARD REPORTER

A WOMAN who gave birth to quads after bungled fertility treatment today won her claim for damages for their " wrongful conception and wrongful birth".

Vivien Heath, 37, and her 42-year-old husband Clive are to get damages in the first case of its kind to reach the High Court.

One of the quads died and the remaining three suffered varying forms of disability after being born three months prematurely on Christmas Eve, 1992.

The three surviving children, eight- year- olds Kristian, Matthew and Ellis, will also get damages for the injuries they suffered.

The settlement to the Heath family is expected to be in excess of [pound]1 million Mrs Heath went into labour at 26 weeks and the babies were delivered by emergency Caesarean operation.

Mr Justice Leveson approved settlement of all the claims with the exact amount of damages in each case yet to be assessed.

Adrian Whitfield, QC, for the family told the judge the children were "lovingly and beautifully cared for" by their "devoted" parents. Mr and Mrs Heath, of Orpington, opted for fertility treatment when she had difficulty in conceiving.

The couple wanted a sibling for their first child Ryan, now 14.

They also have another son Max, four, who was conceived naturally.

Mrs Heath went to Farnborough Hospital in Kent and was put on the fertility drug Clomid. But when that did not work she was given the more powerful drug Metrodin to stimulate her ovaries to produce eggs, with another drug Pro-fasi to trigger ovulation.

There was a risk of over stimulation and over production in the release of eggs, said Mr Whitfield.

He said obstetricians should have made sure this did not happen. But she was not given the opportunity to have treatment to reduce the amount of eggs to ensure that she only gave birth to one or two children. …

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