• Thu. Aug 11th, 2022

Oklahoma mom accused of daughter’s unnecessary medical treatment

Oklahoma mother faces jail time for allegedly lying to numerous doctors in six different states about her daughter’s state of health over the past decade in what is suspected to be a case of so-called Munchausen by proxy.

Alisha Newman, 34, was charged this week with two counts of physical abuse and child neglect, according to a criminal complaint obtained by BuzzFeed News, after her 10-year-old daughter was admitted to the hospital. Children’s hospital in Wisconsin apparently in severe shock and acute kidney failure, target organ damage and acidosis.

Doctors became concerned when Newman told medical staff her daughter was diagnosed with several illnesses that the hospital, which examined the child in 2016, had previously ruled out as possible diagnoses.

The hospital investigated the child’s medical records dating back to her birth, according to the complaint, and found that Newman had “systematically provided false or misleading information to health care providers,” forcing her daughter to receive medical treatment. unnecessary and dangerous medical treatments, including many surgeries for pacemakers, an IV port, and a feeding tube.

The complaint also states that the hospital believes Newman suffers from a mental health condition known as vicarious munchausen, in which a person invents illnesses for someone they care for. The syndrome is explored in the Hulu series The act, which is based on a BuzzFeed News article about Dee Dee Blanchard and her daughter Gypsy.

Over the 10 years of Newman’s daughter’s life, several doctors have expressed concerns that the mother might have Munchausen by proxy, including the child’s first pediatrician.

When her daughter was only 11 weeks old, Newman told doctors the baby did not tolerate feeding, was vomiting excessively and was losing weight, prompting hospital staff to place surgically a feeding tube. “During my stay in the hospital, [the child] had no feeding or vomiting problems, ”the complaint said, but doctors put in a feeding tube“ based on the concerns reported by the accused ”.

Newman reported that her 5-month-old daughter was exhibiting symptoms of a heart disease called bradycardia and syncope, which the complaint describes as temporary loss of consciousness, usually associated with insufficient blood flow. Two hospitals performed comprehensive check-ups and found that the child’s heart was functioning normally.

When her daughter was 2, Newman went to Duke Hospital, saying she found the child unconscious two weeks earlier and had him admitted for a heart exam, which returned to normal.

Newman told doctors her daughter suffered from a nervous system dysfunction which manifested as “hypothermia, hyperthermia, bradycardia, tachycardia and ‘turning purple’,” and the hospital decided to proceed with surgery to install a pacemaker, despite the normal assessment, based on “the medical history provided by the defendant, combined with a single report from the senior pediatrician” that the child had a low heart rate.

A 2016 examination of Newman’s daughter at the Wisconsin Children’s Hospital “showed no need” for a pacemaker, and the doctor “noted that all information suggesting the pacemaker was still needed came from of the defendant ”, according to the complaint.

After the doctor told Newman in 2018 he couldn’t justify replacing the pacemaker, Newman reportedly took his daughter to Oklahoma Children’s Hospital and told doctors that a replacement pacemaker. had been recommended in Wisconsin. The hospital performed the operation and attached a new pacemaker.

In addition to the feeding tubes and pacemakers, the complaint also alleges that Newman caused her daughter to have a port installed in her skin to receive treatment for an alleged immunoglobulin deficiency which she was never diagnosed with. .

According to the report prepared at the Wisconsin Children’s Hospital and cited in the complaint, “the defendant’s behavior, combined with the defendant’s practice of employing several different medical providers in several different states (Oklahoma, Texas, Ohio, Wisconsin, North Carolina, Tennessee) led to [her daughter] being misdiagnosed and undergoing multiple unwarranted medical procedures, many of which risked [her daughter]is life.

The charges against Newman carry a possible total of $ 75,000 in fines and 27 years in prison.

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