NHS apology over amputee toddler in toxic shock misdiagnosis

Wednesday, 24 August 2016 15:39

An article in the BBC news http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-suffolk-37148533 highlights the devastating and life-changing affects missing the early signs of toxic shock can have.

Reuben Harvey-Smith was just three years old when he was taken to Ipswich Hospital in July 2015 after he accidentally burned himself. Two days later his mother returned to the Hospital with Reuben after he had developed a fever and sore throat, and was told he had tonsillitis and prescribed antibiotics.

The following day Reuben was critically ill. His mother called the burns unit at Chelsea and Westminster for a second opinion. Doctors suspected toxic shock, a life-threatening infection which would have been caused by bacteria entering the wound and releasing poisonous toxins into Reuben’s blood.

Reuben was rushed back to Ipswich Hospital then transferred to St Mary’s Hospital in London, where he had to have both legs amputated below the knee and parts of seven fingers after the hospital failed to recognise his body had gone into toxic shock.

The parents took legal action on behalf of their son Reuben and Ipswich Hospital NHS Trust have admitted that toxic shock was a “significant possibility” based on Reuben’s symptoms and amputation could have been avoided with earlier diagnosis and treatment.

The Trust has admitted full liability and has offered an unreserved apology, as well as providing further training to their staff in recognising the warning signs of septic shock syndrome and is committed to ensure that Reuben is appropriately compensated so that he has the care, prostheses and equipment that he needs throughout his life.

If you have any concerns about the medical treatment you have received please contact one of our specialist Medical Negligence Solicitors at our Bristol Office, all of whom are experienced in dealing with a broad range of Medical Negligence Claims, for free initial independent advice.

Anita Marriott, Associate, E: 


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