Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Legal case stuck - but genetics progresses

We met with a new lawyer yesterday to discuss our case. I watched him on the evening news a few weeks ago arguing a medical negligence case, and liked his doggedness. That case sounded awfully weak.

To recap: we believe that C.'s epilepsy was triggered by the MMR vaccine. She had had a normal EEG at 10 months and no seizures until 2 weeks after she received her MMR at 14 months.

From the age of three months, C. was known to have a global developmental delay. In fact, she was given pertussis-free triple antigens because of it. 

So our contention is that the MMR posed a greater risk for her than for a healthy child. Had we been warned of that risk at the Mother & Baby Health Center before the jab, we would have passed on the MMR with no hesitation.

In fact, on the day prior to the vaccine, I consulted with two doctors who were treating C. at the time. One, a pediatric neurologist, and the other, a developmental pediatrician, both insisted that I must vaccinate her and that not doing so would endanger her far more than the MMR itself. (I did not record either of those conversations so legally it's as if they never happened.)

As a result of her epilepsy, C. deteriorated drastically over the following months until she reached the level of profound impairment that she is at today. The possibility that C.'s epilepsy may have erupted at some future point is irrelevant as long as it is apparent that the MMR triggered it then.

Here is what's crucial to our case: we need sound evidence that back in 1996, when C. was vaccinated, there was awareness in the medical world of the higher risk that MMR posed for children already neurologically-impaired.

To date, we have found a medical journal article from that period in which a group of Japanese researchers links the MMR vaccine to Lennox Gastaut. which happens to be the very type of epilepsy that C. has.

But that alone won't cut it.

Does anybody know of corroborative medical literature?

Yesterday's lawyer told us "not interested". One reason he gave: the damages would be paltry. It would be argued, he says, that since C. was impaired before the vaccine, she would have needed a great deal of nursing care anyway.

And while we're asking for assistance...

Here are the results of C.'s recent genetic test. They stumped our neurologist. I have now booked an appointment with a geneticist who, we hope, will shed some light on the findings. But in the meantime, for everybody's perusal, here they are (and my apologies if the translation into English, and the transcription from the report's fax-quality appearance produces unintentional errors):
In this test, quantitative changes that are known today as polymorphic sites in the database:
  • Chromosomal Area: 2q37.3
  • Type of Change: Deletion
  • Size: 211Kb 
  • Co-ordinates: Chr 2: 242,856, 618 - 243,086,370
In addition, other quantitative changes were found at additional sites but their clinical meaning is currently unclear, so I will not list them.

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