Inquest To Investigate Death Following Bronchoscopy At Heartlands Hospital

Mother Of Four Died After Routine Bronchial Lavage Procedure

18.12.2009

An inquest is due to begin on Monday 21st December, to investigate the circumstances which led to the death of a 64 year old woman at Heartlands Hospital in Birmingham.

Mother of four, Rosemary McFarlane, from Kingshurst, Birmingham, was admitted to Heartlands Hospital on 4th August 2008. On 12th August she underwent a routine bronchial lavage procedure*.

She died ten days later on 22nd August 2008. Mrs McFarlane, known to family and friends as Marie, leaves behind a husband, Ian, and five grandchildren.

Birmingham Coroner, Aidan Cotter, will investigate the circumstances surrounding Mrs McFarlane’s death.  On day two of the hearing (Tuesday 22nd December) Dr Mark Goldman, the Chief Executive of Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust, which runs Heartlands Hospital, will be summoned to give evidence at the inquest.

Guy Forster, a medical negligence solicitor with law firm, Irwin Mitchell, who is representing Mrs McFarlane’s family, said: “Marie was a devoted wife and mother as well as a grandmother to five grandsons, who have all found it incredibly hard to come to terms with her untimely death. 
“We very much hope that the inquest will shed light on the precise circumstances which led to Marie’s death.”

* Bronchoscopy is a technique of visualizing the inside of the airways for diagnostic and therapeutic purposes. An instrument (bronchoscope) is inserted into the airways, usually through the nose or mouth, or occasionally through a tracheostomy. This allows the practitioner to examine the patient's airways for abnormalities such as foreign bodies, bleeding, tumours, or inflammation. Specimens may be taken from inside the lungs: biopsies, fluid (bronchial lavage), or endobronchial brushing.
 
Bronchial lavage is a medical procedure in which a bronchoscope is passed through the mouth or nose into the lungs and fluid is squirted into a small part of the lung and then re-collected for examination.