Page last updated at 14:34 GMT, Wednesday, 7 October 2009 15:34 UK

Cancer woman 'told she had wind'

Barbara Collins (left) and her daughter Angela Stubbs (right)
Barbara Collins had 6.5 litres of fluid trapped in her stomach at one point

A hospital is investigating claims a grandmother, who was dying from ovarian cancer, was wrongly diagnosed with trapped wind.

Barbara Collins was taken to hospital in April after being violently sick. Her family say she was given medication for constipation and sent home.

After seven visits to Manchester Royal Infirmary she was told she had ovarian cancer on 31 July and died in August.

A hospital spokesman said: "We are currently in contact with the family."

At one point Mrs Collins, 68, from Marple Bridge in Stockport, was so weak she was begging medical staff to help her, her family have claimed.

When she first fell ill, we thought, we have to believe the doctors, we have to put our trust in them. How could they have got it so wrong?
Angela Stubbs

Her daughter, Angela Stubbs, said: "Each time she went to the doctors she was told to go home and continue taking lactulose to treat her supposed constipation.

"That just went on every time she attended the accident and emergency department she told them she was feeling very sick and she was basically calling out for help then.

'Very sorry'

"She just kept trying to get across to the doctors how poorly she actually was."

When she was finally admitted to hospital, with what the doctor thought was a "failed bowel", she had to have 6.5 litres of fluid drained from her stomach, according to the family.

Angela Stubbs
Angela Stubbs wants to know why the diagnosis was so wrong

On 31 July, two months after she was first sent home from hospital that she was told she may have ovarian cancer.

Mrs Collins, who had four children and 10 grandchildren, died on 11 August.

Her daughter has since submitted an official complaint to Central Manchester University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.

"When she first fell ill, we thought, we have to believe the doctors, we have to put our trust in them.

"How could they have got it so wrong?"

A spokesman for Central Manchester University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust said: "We extend our condolences to the family of Mrs Collins - we are very sorry for the distress caused to them.

"We can confirm that we have been in contact with the family and are currently in the process of setting up a meeting.

"We will then undertake a review of Mrs Collins' care and we will provide her family with a detailed report on the outcome of the review."



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