An English woman with spina bifida is suing her mother’s former doctor for millions of dollars in health care costs and damages, claiming she should never have been born.
Evie Toombes, 20-year-old horse rider from Lincolnshire, sues her mother’s GP Dr Philip Mitchell for ‘misconception’ after allegedly failing to advise her mother to take folic acid supplements before falling pregnant that she claims resulted in her birth defect, according to The Telegraph.
Toombes was diagnosed with lipomyelomeningocele after her birth in November 2001, a neural tube defect in the spine. His bones never developed properly along his spinal cord, causing permanent disability.
She claims her mother would never have had her if her doctor had told her she needed to take folic acid supplements to minimize the chances of an abnormality affecting her baby.
Her lawyer, Susan Rodway, told the UK High Court judge that Toombes was suing for “being born in a damaged condition” and wanted to recover the millions of dollars needed to cover the costs of living with her illness.
Mitchell denied responsibility and replied that he had given Caroline Toombes “reasonable advice”, although it is standard practice to advise potential mothers to take the supplement before conceiving and during the first 12 weeks of pregnancy. , reported The Telegraph.
His lawyer argued that he used to tell expectant parents about 400 milligrams of folic acid, but if the mother had a good diet, the folic acid levels were generally at a healthy level anyway. and the supplements would be less important.
“He told me it wasn’t necessary,” she told the judge on her visit to the doctor in February 2001. “I was told that if I had had a good diet before, I wouldn’t have to take folic acid. “
Rodway said if she had been advised by Mitchell she would have postponed the birth of a baby.
“This is her proof that she would have seen it and would not have tried to get pregnant until she was convinced that she had protected herself as much as possible,” she said. , according to The Telegraph.
Rodway added that Caroline Toombes would have had a “normal and healthy” baby, but who was a “genetically different person” from Evie Toombes.
Currently, although her mobility is “very limited”, the equestrian hopes to compete in the Paralympic Games although she is sometimes hooked up to medical tubes for 24 hours a day. As she gets older, she will be more frequently tied to a wheelchair. She also suffers from bowel and bladder problems as a result of her condition.
The final judgment is expected at a later date.