What Ails You
Saturday, 09 June 2012 02:30
By caribarena news
Antigua St John's - Shenika Williams, a 25-year-old mother of four, is baffled as to what might have gone wrong over the Whit Weekend at the Mount St. John’s Medical Center (MSJMC) to have caused her to lose the function of both legs.
Williams, who had gone to the hospital with mild leg and neck pains on Saturday May 26, said she had initially been placed on a regimen of Voltaren tablets. She was advised by medical officers that nothing was wrong with her legs. She then went home.
When the pain returned with intensified force on Sunday, she returned to MSJMC. This time, she was injected with the drug (Voltaren) rather than given tablets.
Williams said she was knocked out by the drug and when she awoke there was a noticeable “numbness” in her legs.
“They said everything was okay and sent me home. When I got home I could not breathe properly, that is why I came back the same Sunday (May 27). That is when then they put me on the oxygen machine and give me the injection. That put me to sleep for a while and when I woke up that's when I noticed the numbness in my legs,” Williams said.
As of Tuesday evening May 29 that numbness was still there, and she was only able to move the upper half of her body.
Ms. Williams has been in the hospital since Sunday May 27, and doctors have been unable to offer a satisfactory diagnosis for her situation.
Early on the morning of Tuesday May 29 the single mother was required to spend some EC$1700 for a Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) scan at the Belmont Clinic.
However, although she had received the results of that MSJMC-ordered examination immediately upon completion, up to that evening hospital doctors had not informed her of the interpretation of those results.
“I went to do an MRI at Belmont (Clinic),” Williams said on Tuesday evening. “I got the results since after 5pm today but I don't see no doctor telling me anything as yet.”
MSJMC doctors said the MRI results, which were read on Wednesday May 30, showed that the young woman had a nerve ailment in the legs that caused the numbness she reported on Saturday.
She is convinced that she was given the wrong medication, which caused the almost complete collapse of her legs. Initially, she said nurses told her that nothing was wrong with her before dosing her with the Voltaren tablets.
The single mother was intent on leaving the hospital on Wednesday May 30 to attend to her children, who range between 11 years of age and 6 months old. Although at the time she did not see herself having the strength to leave the hospital the next day, Williams was hoping for a miracle of some kind and counting on the fact that she could “pull” her upper body around.
Last Thursday May 31 a new regimen had begun with medication specific to her diagnosed nerve condition, and it was expected that noticeable results would be realized soon. Williams remains a patient of the MSJMC.
She said she has not been given a wheelchair or any mobile aid to move around the medical facility, and has as a result been laid up in bed for over a week. As a result of this, she said, she has developed a burning sensation throughout her body that has gone ignored by physicians. Also of grave concern to her is a swollen stomach.
Caribarena has obtained a copy of the MRI Report, and according to a noted medical physician nothing in the MRI report explains Williams’ symptoms. The doctor questioned whether a Lumbar Puncture was performed as, in his opinion, this would not only explain the symptoms but might also be a very useful test to rule out viral or bacterial involvement in the case, especially since Williams had also complained of a stiff neck.
“There is a host of conditions that could cause her complaints … a proper neurological, vascular , and physical exam will be very useful. Voltaren, however, will not cause or relieve those neurological symptoms,” the doctor said
The medical practitioner questioned whether Williams had a “Lumbar Puncture” performed, and wondered again if she was recently pregnant. Questions of this order, he said, if asked from the outset, might have led the MSJMC physicians to a more accurate diagnosis.
Public Relations Officer of the MSJMC Selma Crump said she was unfamiliar with the case and even if she had any information on the matter of how the situation is being handled, she would not be at liberty to discuss such since it would mean a breach of confidentiality rules for the patient.
"I have not been given authorization to discuss this matter at all. I am not familiar with this case or the patient. It is not something that I could talk about at this point," Crump said.
She has assured however that she would make efforts to secure whatever information she could on the matter and release whatever is authorized.