Monday, 9 February 2009

BBC: Girl starved to death after op

An eight-year-old girl starved to death at home because she refused to open her mouth after a dental operation, an inquest heard.

Sophie Waller, from St Dennis, Cornwall, was so afraid of dentists she was sent to the Royal Cornwall Hospital to have her milk teeth taken out.

Afterwards, she would not open her mouth and was given a feeding tube.

The inquest heard that she died at home about three weeks later from acute renal failure.


Despite attempts to feed her and contact with a psychologist, Sophie's health deteriorated and eventually she could hardly walk.

She was found dead in her bed at home on 2 December.

Her parents said that four days before Sophie's death they rang the hospital to say they were bringing her back in but were told they could not.

A pathologist, Dr Marion Brundell, told the inquest that Sophie had died of acute renal failure from dehydration and starvation.

The hearing continues.

Where lessons will be learned...


JuliaM said...

I just saw this on the Beeb, and popped over to see if anyone had posted it.

Very strange case, and the 'they rang the hospital to say they were bringing her back in but were told they could not' bit is very disturbing...

subrosa said...

Indeed it's disturbing Julia. Surely there's more to it than meets the eye.

AntiCitizenOne said...

You definitely get the "there's something we're not being told" feeling when you read it.

I had such a "and where's the rest?" when I got to the end of the article, I thought about not posting it.

One to watch, and if you find other news sources running the story with more info, post them here and we'll hopefully add some more info.

JuliaM said...

The 'Mail' has more details (yeah, I know, but the other papers don't seem to be carrying it), and it seems the child psychologist they referrred her to after discharge never actually saw her:

"Mrs Waller says they contacted the hospital with their concerns but were told not to bring her back and referred her to child psychologist Kerry Davison.

The couple claim say they rang her at least once a day but say she told them 'everything would be fine' and not to worry as long as she was eating something.

Mr Waller said: 'It could have easily been avoided if we had just taken her into hospital instead of listening to that woman."

Why did they not DEMAND that she be seen, hell, even take her to A7E if necessary?

Very strange case...

Mark Wadsworth said...

I think Julia has nailed it. The girl was refusing to eat (for whatever reason, I don't think it's relevant) and the NHS refused to help her.