By Matthew Roscoe • 10 February 2023 • 15:43
Heartbreak as young girl dies of peritonitis despite multiple trips to emergency room in Spain's Valencia. Image: LEVANTEMEDIA/Shutterstock.com
According to Spanish media reports, the 12-year-old died of peritonitis – a serious condition that starts in the abdomen – on Monday, February 6 in the Hospital Clínico de Valencia despite being taken to the emergency services three times with severe abdominal pain, vomiting and fever.
Each time she was dismissed with no medical tests being carried out.
Beatriz Gascó, the mother of 12-year-old Enma, told Spanish media outlet EFE that she was filing a complaint against the health administration for “medical negligence” because she did not want what happened to her daughter to “to happen again”.
She said that she hoped her actions would force a “change [in] the protocol [so] every child or adult who comes in with abdominal pain [would] undergo a test.”
According to the mother, she first took her daughter to the emergency room in Viver, around six kilometres from their home in Jérica, on January 29.
She said her daughter was suffering from abdominal pain, vomiting and a slight fever.
However, the doctor reportedly said she had “a virus” and although Beatriz worried it could be appendicitis like her older son had already had, the doctor “ruled it out.”
“I’m not a doctor and I couldn’t contradict him so we went home,” the mother said.
On February 2, the young girl was feeling unwell again so she was taken to the outpatient clinic in Viver.
She spoke to another doctor who upon “seeing the reports of the 29th, didn’t even get up.”
“He asked me why I came back and I told him that she was not feeling well, that she was still not eating and had diarrhoea, and that she was losing a lot of weight,” the mother explained.
The doctor then told her that it was a virus and that it could last eight to ten days.
Two days later, the mother took her daughter to Sagunto Hospital as she had a fever of 38.8 and severe pain in her abdomen.
“I was told that it was nothing, that although she had lost weight we should go home as it was nothing.”
On February 5, Enma still didn’t feel well so she was taken to the doctor again and in the consultation “she fainted and lost consciousness”.
She then when into respiratory arrest and the doctor spent twelve minutes reviving her.
She was then rushed to the Hospital Clínico de València where she again went into arrest and sadly, after two hours of trying to revive her, she died at around 2 am on February 6.
“This can’t be happening in the 21st century, that a child or an adult dies of peritonitis,” Beatriz said.
“Enma was cheerful, she was always with her friends recording TikTok, singing songs. She played football, she went to the conservatory, she was very studious, even when she was ill she was doing her homework.
“She was the joy of the house, I don’t have a single photo in which she was angry.”
The Department of Health told EFE that it “deeply regrets” the death of the young girl and will “analyse everything that has happened.”
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Originally from the UK, Matthew is based on the Costa Blanca and is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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