A 36-year-old woman bled to death due to a rare complication while giving birth in hospital, an inquest has heard.

Leyla Lliff, from Erith, South East London, died despite the efforts of doctors and surgeons at Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Woolwich on February 19 last year.

She had undergone a planned lower caesarean section for a major placenta previa, where a baby’s placenta covers the mother’s cervix, MyLondon reports.

However, following the procedure she suffered a “catastrophic postpartum haemorrhage” – a rare complication where a mother bleeds heavily after birth.

An inquest opened into her death at Inner South London Coroner’s Court.

Leyla underwent a hysterectomy under the watch of both specialist general vascular and obstetric surgeons to control the bleeding, but she sadly died a short time later.

A post-mortem examination carried out in the days after her death revealed multiple causes of death.

Assistant Coroner Dr Julian Morris told the court that the causes of death were 1A hypovolemic shock, 1B postpartum haemorrhage and 1C placenta accreta and increta and traumatic pregnancy.

Caesarean section and placenta previa were also listed.

The coroner proceeded to formally open the inquest, but could not provide a date to which the case has been adjourned due to ongoing issues with a large backlog of cases owning to coronavirus.

He said: “She had a planned a lower caesarean section for a major placenta previa which was followed by catastrophic postpartum haemorrhage.

“She had a hysterectomy performed at the time, together with interventional radiology, and input from both general vascular and obstetric surgeons to try and control her bleeding. Sadly, she did not survive.

“Given the circumstances surrounding Ms Lliff’s death, which I confirm are unnatural, I open an inquest accordingly.

“I will be providing directions [to[ Coroner’s officers to undertake further investigations and collate together information in respect of the circumstances surrounding it.”