A THREE-YEAR-OLD boy died of pneumonia after a doctor sent him home with paracetamol saying it was “nothing out of the ordinary”.
Krishan Saujani, who had Down’s syndrome, was taken to see his GP by his parents after suffering a bout of vomiting, diarrhoea and fever.
He was treated for possible viral symptoms but parents were refused antibiotics.
This was the first in a “catalogue of errors” in the run-up to his death just hours later, Leicestershire Live reports.
Medics failed to recognise his condition was deteriorating fast because of sepsis, which they failed to spot.
As his condition deteriorated that evening, Shalin and husband Bhavini Saujani rang 111, who said they would send an ambulance.
NIGHT OF DELAYS
The family waited for 90 minutes without it arriving. When they called again, another turned up more than half an hour later – but the A&E department was then too busy to get in there.
Mr Saujani described the hospital that night as “chaotic” and told bosses that it was extremely busy.
Their child was only moved to the assessment unit at 3.30am – after lying “abandoned” on a hospital trolley for several hours on November 8, 2015, an inquest heard.
Speaking to the hospital board last week, Mr Saujani recalled: “When he was transferred, one of the nurses looked at him and said he didn’t look right, she said we needed to get him looked at urgently.
I asked if I could calm him down and I picked him up into my arms, his eyes rolled backwards and he arrested. I knew something wasn’t right
Krishan's dad, Bhavini Saujani
“Suddenly there was an urgency about the care, it felt like something had gone drastically wrong.
“From that point they were playing catch up, but it was way too late for that.”
He continued: “I asked if I could calm him down and I picked him up into my arms, his eyes rolled backwards and he arrested. I knew something wasn’t right.
“I called out to K who had just stepped outside and we screamed for the doctors. They rushed in and tried for almost an hour to resuscitate him but they couldn’t.”
Krishan stopped breathing and medics were unable to resuscitate him.
Last year a coroner ruled that Krishan had died of natural causes, after contracting bronchial pneumonia as a result of sepsis, a blood infection that can be fatal.
But his parents have been left wondering how the sepsis could have been missed.
Mr Saujani told the hospital board: “It’s just so disappointing to know that this could have been prevented.
“We asked the doctors afterwards what had happened and they told us they didn’t know.”
Mrs Saujani, who recently had another baby, said: “We felt that we weren’t listened to as his parents.
We knew there was something wrong, he wasn’t himself and we were telling them that and no one seemed to take that seriously.
Krishan's mum, Shalin Saujani
“We knew there was something wrong, he wasn’t himself and we were telling them that and no one seemed to take that seriously.
“We were acting as translators for him and we weren’t listened to.
“As a parent you know your child better than anyone, we just wish we’d been heard sooner.”
During the inquest, Dr Samantha Jones, head of paediatric services, told the parents the department was “terribly, terribly sorry”.
Sam Brown was clinical lead on the new children’s A&E department at the hospital.
Symptoms of pneumonia
- Pneumonia is swelling (inflammation) of the tissue in one or both lungs, usually caused by a bacterial infection.
- At the end of the breathing tubes in your lungs are clusters of tiny air sacs. If you have pneumonia, these tiny sacs become inflamed and fill up with fluid.
- The symptoms of pneumonia can develop suddenly over 24 to 48 hours, or they may come on more slowly over several days.
- These can include:
- A cough – which may be dry, or produce thick yellow, green, brown or blood-stained mucus (phlegm)
- Difficulty breathing – your breathing may be rapid and shallow, and you may feel breathless, even when resting
- Rapid heartbeat
- Feeling generally unwell
- Sweating and shivering
- Loss of appetite
- Chest pain – which gets worse when breathing or coughing.
- Other, less common symptoms include: coughing up blood, headaches, fatigue, nausea or vomiting, wheezing, join and muscle pain, feeling confused or disorientated.
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She said: “Krishan was at the forefront of my mind when we built the new children’s ED.
“We never want something like this to happen again.
“Our processes have changed completely. We are a different department now.”
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