Aussie boy could lose his leg after horrific hospital error: 'Tortured'

A medical mistake that could've been easily avoided could see a seven-month-old Australian boy lose his leg.

"It's like he's been tortured," his mum, Joanne Magri Seguna told Yahoo News Australia.

The Melbourne local and her husband flew to Malta for his father's funeral with their two children at the start of November, when a few days in, Zayn got sick.

"It started with just a basic cold, he was coughing a little bit and then he started to wheeze," Mrs Seguna said.

"When it was starting to get a bit of worse, we went to emergency to get him checked out, and they kept him overnight. The next day they said he's alright to go home and gave him a puffer."

A photo of the family.
A seven-month-old Melbourne boy, Zayn, has been left in a tragic condition after a medical blunder. Source: Facebook

"Then about three days later I was looking at him and he looked really bad, struggling to breathe."

Being diagnosed with influenza bronchiolitis, he went back to Mater Dei Hospital in Malta on the 12th of November and the family have not not left hospital since.

"He kept getting worse and worse," Mrs Seguna said.

Poor hospital treatment worsens baby's condition

The mum was utterly shocked with the standard of care at the hospital, saying her baby's condition was routinely dismissed and she even had to do certain things herself.

"The hospital there, the wards, they're no good," Mrs Seguna said. "They didn't care, I had to do stuff for him. One day I looked up at him in the hospital the nasal prongs for oxygen had come off, they were on top of his nose. The nurses said 'oh that's fine, he's still getting air from them'. How can he be? they are on top of his nose, pointing towards his eyes. So I put them back in."

"A few hours later the consultant came, she was nice, so I went up to her in front of the nurses and yelled can you please come help me because none of them wanted to get up.

"So she checked on him and then started telling the nurses what to do and one of them said 'oh when I have time, I'll do it because we're busy and don't have many staff on', when they've all been sitting there watching their phones."

Two photos of Zayn, one of him before falling sick and another after.
His condition was worsened by the hospital's lack of care. Source: Gofundme

She claimed that when her cousin who works at the hospital showed up, the nurses suddenly started to help.

"If you're working at a hospital, you need to help because you want to help, not because you know someone," Mrs Seguna said.

Medical mistake leads to punctured artery

As his conditioned worsened, Zayn went on a ventilator and staff needed to insert a central venous catheter that goes to a vein near the heart or just inside the heart. However that's when things took a turn for the worse.

"We were told to wait in the hallway and they were trying for three to four hours poking him, no ultrasound machine to check where it is, and they just kept going," Mrs Seguna said.

She explained that eventually they got it but also poked his artery during the process, causing his leg colour to "change straight away" and go "white and cold".

"All they did with his leg is watch it for four or five days. Gave him blood thinner and that's it," Mrs Seguna said.

"Then four, five days later they say they have no vascular surgeon for children and we need to take them to the UK. Why didn't they tell me the same day that it happened? Could've saved his leg."

Flying to London on an emergency jet on November 25, they were admitted to Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children, where the surgeon told Mrs Seguna that the punctured artery "should've been looked at within hours not days, so a lot of damage would've been done".

"The toes will be gone for sure, and I don't know how much of the leg they'll be able to save," Mrs Seguna said. "They're just waiting to see what muscles have survived."

Family struggling while they await the news

The mum flew with Zayn, while her husband and their other son stayed in Malta, currently trying to get their flights organised.

"It's too hard for me here by myself, I felt so sick last night I couldn't even move, I couldn't even get up this morning, it's non-stop," Mrs Seguna said.

She also tragically described how Zayn has been. "He's just not happy anymore," she said. "He cries, it's like he's been tortured."

GoFundMe started to help family with bills

A GoFundMe has been started for the family in hopes of helping them with medical bills, travel costs and general support, which has since raised almost $74,000 out of the $100,000 goal.

Baby Zayn has since had one surgery and may have another next week, though the goal is for him to recover in the UK or travel back to Australia when he's healthy enough, to continue his hospital care back home.

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