Lights and Shadows on a Hospital BedJanuary 7, 2013 | Print |
HAVANA TIMES — The achievements of Cuban medicine — which are more than a few — are tarnished by cases that are not as isolated as one might think. Just a few weeks ago my cousin gave birth to a baby, during which time her life was threatened because of a series of bad decisions by staff attending her.
First, when her delivery date came, she was sent back home since she wasn’t evidencing the typical signs, contractions, dilation, etc. Days later, things got complicated because the unborn baby defecated inside the womb and its umbilical cord got tangled around its neck.
I had heard of this happening when the gestation exceeds its term, but I’ve never received any expert opinion concerning this.
Luckily for everyone, the child was born as well as could be expected in a situation like that. Once safe and sound, it was then the life of the mother that came into play.
A simple injection, misapplied, ended up being too short to reach the muscle, which caused a large swelling in her right buttock that resulted in an infection. When trying to control the situation with an antibiotic, this produced a severe allergic reaction.
On this point I’m still pretty confused. Was it that her parents know about this allergy and it didn’t appear in your medical charts, or was it recorded and the doctors didn’t notice it?
Yet not only was there an infection, there was also swelling. They finally managed to control the allergy with another drug, but the infection remained. The decision was to cut open her skin, without anesthetic, to let the pus out.
The life of my cousin has returned to normal but not without her having to go through a long and painful process, during which time she never stopped breastfeeding her infant son.