Missed contraceptive coil left woman unable to have children

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Jayne Huddleston
Image caption,
Jayne Huddleston said: "It never goes away, I won't get those years back again."

A woman was denied the chance to have children with her husband after a contraceptive coil was accidentally left in place for 29 years.

Jayne Huddleston, from Crewe, had eight rounds of fertility treatment she did not need because the correct checks were not carried out by her doctor.

She said she was "absolutely devastated" about the missed opportunity.

Ms Huddleston and her husband have now reached a settlement with the GP.

She said the mistake happened in 1990.

"The GP said it couldn't be seen, so I was sent for a scan and the scan didn't pick anything up, the GP recommended another coil was fitted," she told the BBC.

She was told the coil she had fitted around a year earlier had probably fallen out.

When she and her husband, David, then decided they wanted to have a child, the second coil was removed, but the first coil, which had gone undetected, remained inside her.

They tried for years to have a baby, with no success, including IVF treatment which cost them thousands of pounds.


The mistake was only discovered when she went for an X-ray in 2019 after complaining of back pain and the original coil was revealed.

"I came out of that room, I was just devastated, I was in tears," she said.

"David was waiting for me outside and I just looked at David through tears and I said "David, all those babies"."

The first coil had been in place for 29 years and by that time she was too old to conceive.

She said: "When you think about it, what might have been, it never goes away, I won't get those years back again."

Mr and Mrs Huddleston were awarded a six-figure out of court settlement after taking their case to Irwin Mitchell solicitors.

Zoe Donohue, who represented them, said: "The sad thing is it's quite simple. An x-ray should have been done in 1990.

"Our experts have told us that if it had been done, it would have been found and it would have been removed and she would have been able to go on and have children with David."

The GP who missed the coil is no longer practising.

Mrs Huddleston had a son from a previous marriage so she and David have at least been able to enjoy a grandchild, but she said: "I don't want it to happen to anyone else, I really don't want anyone else to go through this."

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