A young woman who will always have the mind of a child due to medical blunders in the wake of her birth has won millions in NHS compensation.

Following her delivery at Dorset County Hospital in the early 1990s, there was a failure to diagnose and treat her dangerously low blood sugar levels.

"Unacceptable failings" during her first 48 hours of life caused severe brain damage, her barrister, Julian Picton QC, told the High Court in London.

Although now aged in her mid-20s, Mr Picton told Judge Barry Cotter QC: "She is in essence still a small child."

She has no sense of danger, cannot look after herself and her sleep is disturbed by "intractable" epilepsy, he added.

Although she loves pop music, and is affectionate and "very entertaining", her behaviour can be "extremely challenging", the court heard.

Her moods are "mercurial" and her frustration sometimes causes her to lose her temper, Mr Picton said.

Lawyers on her behalf sued the Dorset County Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, which admitted liability in full for her injuries.

And yesterday the trust agreed to settle the woman's claim for a lump sum of £3.85 million.

She will also receive tax-free and index-linked payments of £225,000 a year to cover the costs of her care for life.

NHS counsel, Paul Rees QC, apologised in open court for the "unacceptable failings" that led to the woman's injuries.

He added: "Nothing that I can say will rectify the failings that took place that day, but she and her family are entitled to an apology, and that I give.

"I had the pleasure of meeting her parents and they are impressive and dignified people.

"Over the years, they and the wider family have devoted themselves to her wellbeing and welfare. They deserve a public tribute for all that they have done.

"This settlement secures the future of her and her family and the trust wishes them well."

Approving the settlement, Judge Cotter said the woman suffers "nightly seizures" and her parents almost never enjoy an unbroken night's sleep.

Speaking to the couple, he added: "Life for you has been extremely challenging, to say the least. So many sleepless nights, so many difficulties.

"It is an enormous credit to you that you have been able to do so much for your daughter, for so long.

"The strain on you has been enormous and how you have managed it I simply do not know.

"I hope that this settlement creates a radically different way of life for you and your daughter."

The couple will receive £237,000 of the damages total as some compensation for the years of care they have given their daughter.

That came "nowhere near" reflecting the true value of what they had done, and the judge told them: "Why don't you spend it on yourselves?"

The judge paid tribute to the trust's "helpful and proper approach" to agreeing a settlement of the woman's claim.

A spokesman for Dorset County Hospital NHS Foundation Trust said: “The High Court has approved the agreement reached between the parties in this case. An anonymity order was made by the court on 4 December 2017. To protect the interests of the claimant, the Trust cannot comment on the terms of the settlement reached but the Trust hopes that the agreed damages will enable the claimant to receive the care and therapies the claimant needs.”