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Admission of liability for young boy with kernicterus related brain damage
His brain damage was caused by kernicterus, a condition related to jaundice, when his high levels of bilirubin were not properly monitored or controlled in his first few days of life.
As a healthy newborn baby our client was breastfed, which increases the risk of neonatal jaundice. He began to develop yellow colouration around his face, which worsened over four days until he became too drowsy and lethargic to feed. His parents repeatedly pointed out the yellow colour to the visiting midwife who failed to arrange for the baby’s serum bilirubin levels to be tested. Finally, after four days, at the parents’ request, he was referred to hospital where the paediatricians diagnosed severe jaundice. He needed ventilation on ITU for apnoea and oxygen desaturations. He was treated with phototherapy and underwent an exchange transfusion to bring his bilirubin levels under control but it was too late to prevent permanent brain damage from kernicterus. He now suffers from four limb dystonia, communication and feeding problems, intellectual impairment and has a reduced life expectation.
Boyes Turner’s specialist solicitors investigated the claim and secured an admission of liability from the defendant NHS hospital. Judgment is being entered and we are applying for an interim payment to meet our client’s urgent needs, whilst we assess the full value of the claim.
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