Mumbai: As doctors wait for blood reports, teen dies of dengue

14 July, 2016

The city’s first suspected death caused by dengue this year seems to be mired in complications. While doctors at Sion Hospital, unable to get their hands on Shahid Sayyed’s tests reports, treated him for malaria as well as dengue, his family has alleged the 18-year-old has died of medical negligence. Also, they have claimed a doctor slapped Shahid when he became restless.

The teenager, who was admitted to Sion Hospital on July 10, was kept in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) for two days, before he succumbed to the ailment on Wednesday at 2 am.

The allegations
The deceased’s uncle, Zuber Sayyed, told mid-day the doctors were secretive about Shahid’s health condition. Zuber alleged that though Shahid was admitted on July 10, the crucial Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) report — the test that detects dengue in blood — came in on July 12 midnight.

“The doctors didn’t expedite the test process to determine Shahid’s illness. He died of medical negligence. In their last update, a doctor told me they were waiting for PCR results,” Zuber said.

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He also alleged the doctors hit Shahid on his day of admission. Zuber said, “The boy was in pain and was getting aggressive. But instead of helping him calm down, we saw the doctor slap him. After that, they tied his hands and legs. When we questioned it, we were told it was ‘necessary’.”

Doctor speak
While repeated calls to Sion Hospital’s dean, Dr S Merchant, went unanswered, Dr Nivedita Moulik, head of the department of medicine at the hospital said, “It was suspected to be a case of dengue, but the lab report hasn’t reached us yet. After a point, it’s difficult to differentiate what kind of fever it is. The final diagnosis is given after test results come in.”

On being asked if slapping is the right way to contain an aggressive patient, Dr Moulik said, “I will find out if it’s true. We often need to restrain patients to contain their restlessness. Maybe that was misinterpreted.”