UK baby decapitated inside mother's womb during delivery: Reports

UK baby decapitated inside mother's womb during delivery: Reports

Ninewells hospital
The tragedy occured at Ninewells hospital in Dundee. (Photo: Facebook/​​​​​​​Ninewells Hospital and Medical School, Scotland, UK

UNITED KINGDOM: An unborn baby was decapitated in his mother's womb because of a botched delivery, which could cost a gynaecologist her licence to practice, according to British media reports. 

The tragedy happened at the Ninewells Hospital in Dundee on Mar 16, 2014. The case is now being heard by the British Medial Practitioners Tribunal Service in Manchester. 

According to reports, Dr Vaishnavy Laxman, 41, was advised to give her patient an emergency Caesarean section because the premature infant was in a breech position. 

However, she allegedly ignored the advice and instead attempted to carry out the delivery naturally. 

Dr Laxman urged the mother, known only as Patient A, to push while she applied traction to the baby legs. That caused the infant's head to become detached from the torso, legs and arms, The Guardian reported. 

Two other doctors had to carry out a Caesarean section to remove the head from the mother's womb and reattach to his body so his mother could hold him and bid goodbye. 

According to The Guardian, Charles Garside, a lawyer for the General Medical Council, said that the choice taken by Dr Laxman to try a vaginal delivery was "the wrong choice". 

"New babies are fragile, but this tiny baby was more fragile, and being pulled or twisted could do a lot more damage," said Mr Garside. 

The mother's waters had broken early at 25 weeks, according to reports. Upon examination, her unborn baby was found to have a prolapsed cord. 

Patient A's cervix was around 2 to 3cm dilated, it was claimed. It was claimed that it was not established whether or not the mother was in labour, The Telegraph reported.

She said during the hearing that she was previously told that if anything happened to her son, it was going to be a C-section. But when she was taken to the labour suite, apparently nobody told her what was happening. 

She said she was also not given any pain relief, apart from a spray on her tongue which she was told will loosen her cervix. No gas and air was given, and she was left in pain, she claimed. 

Patient A also told the hearing: "I would never use the word stillborn; he was not stillborn, he was decapitated." She also told Dr Laxman: "I don't forgive you - I don't forgive you." 

Dr Laxman's lawyer Gerard Boyle had to apologise on her behalf. “Dr Laxman has asked me to say she is so very sorry and deeply saddened for the outcome of your baby," Mr Boyle said, according to The Guardian. 

“She knows that no amount of words can or will soften your pain but she is hoping that knowing that what she was trying to do was her very best to deliver your baby quickly and sufficiently and she had best intentions at heart.”

Source: CNA/ng