Kamryn Bond’s hospital stay at the age of 11 months had life-changing consequences.
Now 12, Kamryn was admitted to Queen Elizabeth II Hospital in Grande Prairie on February 19, 2011.
Just over five weeks later, both of his legs were amputated below the knees, along with his right hand and three fingers of his left hand. By then, she had been transferred to Stollery Children’s Hospital in Edmonton.
Now, Kamryn’s mother is fighting on her daughter’s behalf with a $31.7 million lawsuit in the Court of Queen’s Bench in Edmonton against the doctors.
Judge Avril Inglis heard two weeks of testimony last month. A final defense witness testified Wednesday. The trial will last another eight days in September.
According to a statement filed in 2015, Kamryn’s mother, Dale Bond, brought her baby to the hospital in 2011 because she suffered from shortness of breath, a dry cough and a fever.
Family physician Dr. Mark Guhle, one of the doctors named in the lawsuit, cared for Kamryn during his stay at the Grande Prairie hospital.
Doctors initially thought the child had a viral infection after she tested positive for respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) and she was treated accordingly. No antibiotics were given at that time because doctors believed his condition was caused by a virus, not bacteria.
Two days after being admitted to hospital, medical records showed that Kamryn’s condition was deteriorating. She was lethargic and her fever rose in the morning to 40.5°C.
The doctor ordered further tests and, according to court transcripts of his testimony, he asked to be told if there were any significant changes in Kamryn’s condition.
On the morning of February 22, she was in respiratory failure.
“She had a bacterial lung infection which was not treated and led to sepsis,” Bond’s attorney Duncan Embury said Wednesday. “The sepsis was not recognized and turned into septic shock.”
Kamryn was immediately put on intravenous antibiotics and transferred to the Stollery.
According to the statement, she faced many problems, including “infection, breathing difficulties, adrenal insufficiency, ischemic limbs [restricted blood flow]nutritional difficulties and kidney failure.”
The statement alleges that the amputations and other subsequent complications were a direct result of the delay in diagnosis and treatment at the Grande Prairie Hospital. He alleges that Kamryn’s injuries were caused by doctors’ negligence.
In their filed defense statements, the defendants deny all allegations.
In seeking damages, plaintiffs allege that Kamryn has suffered and will continue to suffer significant personal harm that will result in ongoing care costs and loss of earning capacity.
They also allege that Kamryn’s mother took on the burden of caring for a seriously injured child, which also resulted in loss of income and earning capacity.
Dale Bond did not respond to a CBC request for comment.
None of the allegations have been proven in court.