HC Deb 13 December 1955 vol 547 c160W
75. Miss Bacon

asked the Secretary of State for War if he will make a statement about the complications which arose during the second operation on Signalman Palliser.

Mr. F. Maclean

During this operation which took place at the Connaught Hospital on 5th July a dangerous haemorrhage occurred and immediate measures had to be taken to stop the bleeding. During these a small suture needle broke which could not be found and removed at the time without endangering the life of the patient. I am glad to say that Signalman Palliser has since made a very satisfactory recovery.

The civilian consultant in thoracic surgery and the consulting surgeon to the Army have carefully considered whether the fragment of the needle should be removed or left in the tissues and at present advise against removal as the fragment is causing no harm and is most unlikely to give trouble in the future. Signalman Palliser is remaining in hospital for the time being and before he leaves a final decision will be made about the fragment of needle.

I very much regret this accident. Unfortunately such things occasionally happen in surgery in spite of every precaution.