Day in the life of an Obstetrician and Gynaecologist

An average day for a Obstetrician and Gynaecologist

Join us as we interview a panel member, Obstetrician and Gynaecologist – Mr Phillip Kaloo. Mr Kaloo has been providing medico-legal reports since 2014. These reports have been on breach of duty/causation and condition and prognosis.

Mr Philip Kaloo is an experienced Consultant Obstetrician and Gynaecologist and Advanced Laparoscopic Surgeon at Gloucestershire NHS Foundation Trust.

In addition to a practice involving general obstetrics and gynaecology he has a specialist interest in endometriosis / pelvic pain and advanced laparoscopic surgery. Mr Kaloo is the lead clinician for the regional Endometriosis Service.


Philip Kaloo

Thank you for speaking to us. Could you please tell us a little about your medical background Obstetrician and Gynaecologist?

Hello! I studied Medicine at University College London and completed my Obstetrics and Gynaecology training in the Wessex and South West Deaneries. I’ve been a Consultant in Obstetrics and Gynaecology in Gloucestershire Hospitals’ NHS Foundation Trust since 2006. I am a general obstetrician and gynaecologist with additional subspecialist interests in laparoscopic and hysteroscopic surgery, endometriosis, menstrual disorders and the menopause.

Within my training I spent four years in Australia which included two years of research into Endometriosis and Advanced Laparoscopic Surgery at the Universities of Sydney and New South Wales. I have a BSc (Hons) in Psychology from the University of London and an MSc in Advanced Laparoscopic Surgery from the University of Surrey. I have published more than twenty peer-reviewed articles; I am a contributor to NICE Guidelines (Heavy Menstrual Bleeding and Endometriosis) and the primary author for the National Guidelines for Management of Ovarian Masses (Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists).

What made you choose to work as an Obstetrics and Gynaecologist?

Obstetrics and Gynaecology is a truly unique speciality within medicine with enormous variety – from healthy childbirth to the acute emergencies of high-risk obstetrics; from outpatient clinics to operating theatres; from benign to malignant conditions – every week is different. Gynaecological conditions are frequently trivialised, despite their often-profound impact on quality of life – I enjoy working with patients to find treatments that improve their symptoms. In about 40% of patients this will involve surgery. I derive great satisfaction from using advanced surgical techniques to minimise pain, scarring and enhance recovery, all in a bid to improve quality of life.

I note that you have specialist interest in endometriosis and the menopause can you tell us a little about these?

I founded the Gloucestershire Endometriosis Clinic and co-run the Gloucestershire Menopause Clinic. Both these conditions can negatively affect quality of life yet are often not diagnosed or treated in a timely manner. With endometriosis especially there are frequently years between symptom onset and diagnosis/treatment. With the menopause symptoms are often dismissed or attributed to other conditions i.e. depression. Given that both endometriosis and menopause have well established treatments I am keen to widen access to clinics, diagnose patients early and provide timely therapeutic options.

Why would an Obstetrician and Gynaecologist expert witness report be needed?

Breaches in duty of care can occur in any speciality but in obstetrics the consequences can have long-lasting, wide-ranging ramifications for both mother and baby. Over the last ten years the commonest obstetric reports I have written relate to birth injury to mother and/or baby; failure to consent; and complications related to Caesarean sections.

The commonest gynaecological reports I have written relate to complications of surgery ie, ureteric, bowel and bladder injury; a delay to diagnosis; and failure to consent.
Following the Montgomery ruling consent issues in both obstetrics and gynaecology are increasingly the basis of instructions.

Less frequently, condition and prognosis reports are required. In my experience these are most commonly following clinical negligence related to surgical complications.
Because of the breadth of our speciality, it is not uncommon to suggest further opinions from other specialists. Most commonly these are urologists, bowel surgeons and pain specialists.

What attracted you to writing expert witness reports? And how did you obtain the qualification/accreditation to do so?

As an established Consultant I was interested in developing an additional aspect to my medical career, one that used my medical expertise but also required the development of new skills.

What appealed to me about expert witness report writing was the logical analysis of patient records, producing a set of opinions and the reasoning behind them, and being able to communicate this effectively and efficiently to legal colleagues. It definitely feels like being a “bridge” between medical and legal professions.

I have completed the Bond Solon Excellence in Report Writing, Courtroom Skills and Cross-examination Skills courses. I will be completing the Cardiff University Bond Solon Civil Expert Certificate later this year.

In addition to this formal accreditation, I learnt much from asking for feedback and learning from the queries from solicitors.

What would you say to medical professionals looking to undertake expert witness work?

I would highly recommend it but with a few caveats:

Firstly, I would avoid taking this on too early into a consultant post. As an expert witness an awareness and understanding of the range of clinical opinions is important. This awareness develops over time “on the job”.

Secondly, ensure you have adequate time. Producing complex reports is time consuming so be aware of time pressures and accept instructions accordingly.

Thirdly, get accredited and, where possible, ask for feedback on your reports.


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