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Personal Stories

Chris Gooch

When Emma was born in 1971 the consultant who came to visit said she had a heart murmur, possible hip dysplasia and the obvious defect of improperly formed fingers and toes.

She had her first operation at 15 months which was devastating. It took place in Mount Vernon Hospital (a plastic surgery unit) and the babies were tied to their cots as one of them had fallen out and broken an arm. It took an hour to get to the hospital and an hour back. I visited twice a day and she screamed every time I left.

When she was 4 or 5 years of age, I heard children ask why her hands were like they were. Some children were less than kind. She had her next operation at 5 and another when she was 14. For this one she was flat on her back for a month as they had to separate the toes as the webbing was causing pain and distortion. She had to put her feet in silicone every day to help with healing. To this day her feet are still tender. Secondary school was difficult. She often didn’t attend. She suffered with depression and was physically sick every day she did manage to go in. The depression has been recurring.

Her back has always given her trouble and about 2 years ago a lumbar disc disintegrated and she has had to battle with the NHS to see a back specialist. She has had several spinal injections but to no avail and for the last 6 months has been on morphine and co-codamol for the pain. This is the only way she is able to function. They have said the only other option is a fusion of the discs but with no guarantee of success, is irreversible and it could make things worse- so she has rejected this. I had to work from the time Emma was quite young and it has often been very distressing and frustrating to watch her in pain and know that there is nothing I can do. If only I knew then what I know now as I would never have taken those tablets. However, in those days I trusted my doctor and had no reason to believe she would give me something that would cause so much harm. I often wish it was me rather than her who had been affected.

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Personal Stories

Margaret Roberts

My son Garry was born in 1964. I’d been to see my doctor 9 months earlier and was given 2 tablets, one to be taken in the morning and one 12 hours later. I was told that if I didn’t bleed then I was pregnant, and to our delight I was pregnant and had a very happy and uneventful pregnancy.

The birth was difficult, but we were blessed with a beautiful baby boy. However, I knew straight away something was not quite right. I didn’t hear the baby cry, all I heard was a midwife saying ‘it’s a boy’. They quickly allowed me to look at him before rushing him off to the Special Care Baby Unit saying he had breathing problems. In those days, parents and family were not allowed inside the Baby unit because of the spread of germs, so for two days I was only allowed to see him through the glass window.

However, ten days later my husband collected me from hospital and we took our little boy home, but all was not well. He was unable to keep his milk down, there would be projectile vomiting after every feed, which meant he had to be fed a little amount of milk every two hours, and this went on for weeks. I was pleased when the Health Visitor called so that I could explain the difficulty I was having, but her response was of little help; just being told to increase the strength of his feeds. His swallowing did in fact cause problems for the rest of his life, only ever being able to swallow blended or finely mashed up food.

After a few months it became more apparent to us that he wasn’t improving, he wasn’t following the expected milestones for his age. He was very weak, had no muscle tone, his limbs were painfully thin, no attempt to weight bear, he was doubly incontinent. He hardly ever cried, couldn’t speak or make any baby sounds at all. His face was becoming slightly more asymmetrical, a number of his fingers would not open fully, he couldn’t straighten his feet, his testicles did not descend, he had a curvature of the spine. And as time went by the spine was causing more compression to his lungs, which in turn caused him to have recurrent chest infections and pneumonia.

In the early days he was so weak he couldn’t change his position at all, wherever I lay him down that’s where he would stay, but being a positive person, I did not in my wildest dreams think that he wouldn’t get better given time.

As the months went by nothing changed, his swallowing didn’t seem to improve although he did enjoy his food; he was unable to sit up unless propped up with pillows. It was impossible finding a chair that he would be comfortable in, he kept toppling over to one side as the curvature grew bigger.

When Garry was 18 months old we had an appointment with the paediatrician at our local hospital. My husband was unable to attend due to work commitment, so my mother came along for moral support. The paediatrician was a nice man but did seem to have a worried look on his face. Garry was smiling throughout, as he always did. Following an examination and a few tests later, what we were about to hear would change our lives forever. My mother and I had the shock of our lives when the doctor said Garry was not only physically disabled but also severely mentally handicapped, and would need care for the rest of his life. Always thinking that in time he would get stronger and improve with treatment, this was the worse news any mother wants to hear.

As time went on, doctors reassured me that any future pregnancies should be fine, I had another son and two daughters, all three normal healthy children, but this time I did not even think of going to the doctors to confirm pregnancy, in my heart I knew that taking those two tablets had damaged our son.

It was becoming more apparent that Garry’s siblings were reaching their milestones very quickly, feeding well, walking, and talking. Doing all the things that Garry was unable to do, but despite all his problems he was a very happy boy, always smiling and at his happiest lying on the floor, which was the safest place for him, and listening to the soothing music of Jim Reeves.

When Garry was 2 years old it was suggested something needed to be done to correct his spinal curvature, so he was sent to an orthopaedic hospital for about two months lying on a plastercast mould which did nothing to improve his spine.

Following that, the doctors in their wisdom felt a Milwaukee splint was the answer. This was made of hard leather with a softer material on the inside, which was strapped around his hips, from where a metal bar with soft padding on the end extended up to his armpit. The idea was to eventually over time. push his curvature straight. However, this contraption looked like something from outer space. It was heavy and clumsy, and because Garry was incontinent it was impossible to stop the leather from getting wet and soiled; it was a constant battle trying to keep his skin from getting sore.

It became impossible for Garry to continue wearing the splint; what little movement he did have, propelling himself along the floor, came to a stop. So it was then suggested by the Orthopaedic team that he undergo major spinal surgery putting rods and wedges into his spine. The Consultant gave us the very hard choice of deciding whether he should have the operation or not. Both my husband and I thought very hard about it and decided in view of the fact that his deformities were extremely complex his quality of life would remain the same, and the odds of pulling through the operation was 50-50. No further treatment was suggested, it was felt nothing else could be done.

We plodded on caring for Garry as best we could, he was such a happy boy and loved being cuddled which made it all worth while. At nearly five years old Garry had his first epileptic fit, which was the first of many, medication didn’t seem to control them fully. He sometimes had two or three full blown grand mal seizures in one day. It was very distressing for the family to see Garry in these fits, as we all loved him so much.


During these early years we had to make several trips to various hospitals including Alder Hey Children’s Hospital in Liverpool, and the Orthopaedic Hospital near Shrewsbury. It was during his stay in the Orthopaedic Hospital that the Ward Sister accompanied by a Doctor called us into her office and said, “You can leave your son here now and forget all about him, go home and start your life afresh, we have a place where he can be sent to”. Before she even finished her sentence my husband waded in with a resounding “NO, we’re taking him home Now”.

As the years went by daily life was very difficult, Garry was still in nappies, the chest infections continued, the seizures weren’t controlled, and feeding was still a problem. He was also getting heavier which made it difficult to lift him up off the floor, and carry him upstairs to bed or for a bath.

However, Garry was nearly 8 years old when I discovered that a new hospital for adults with mental disabilities had opened only half an hour’s drive from our home. I wasn’t sure whether physically handicapped children were accepted there, but my mind was conjuring up thoughts of Garry being accepted, and I would think of it as a boarding school, Monday to Friday, and he’d be home at the weekends.

I wasn’t going to let this opportunity go by, so contacted the relevant people and practically begged them to allow him to stay there Monday till Friday. The hospital was built on one level, about a dozen small separate units, and one of these units did in fact cater for the physically handicapped. I was over the moon; it meant that I could now devote more time to my other three children and still have Garry home at the weekends.

He seemed to be happy there, the staff would take him out around the beautiful grounds, the songs of Jim Reeves were still played for him and life went on like this for a number of years, Garry’s spinal curvature grew much bigger making it harder for his lungs to expand, therefore more chest infections. Many times we had telephone calls to say he was having breathing difficulties, we would drive over always thinking the worse might happen.

Garry was still having his weekends at home. I would drive over and collect him on a Friday afternoon after picking up the other children from school, then take him back on a Monday morning. This arrangement worked well for years until it became noticeable that he wasn’t settling as well when at home, we thought this might be because he missed the hospital routine and staff.

Years later the Government brought out a Bill called ‘Care in the Community’ which meant Garry would be placed in residential accommodation with carers attending to his needs 24hours a day. Fortunately, this accommodation was a bungalow approximately an hour’s drive from our home.

He lived there for a number of years with two others of similar age. He was well cared for, having his own room which we decorated with his toys, a few ceiling mobiles, posters and photographs to make it homely and cosy.

He continued to have fits, still unable to walk or talk, feeding was still a problem, in fact as he got older his swallowing gradually got worse, frequently choking on his food. With help he did learn to hold onto a spoon and eat by himself of a sort.

The staff were good and very kind with Garry, he was such a loveable boy, everyone who knew him just adored him. Unfortunately, he continued to have chest infections with many emergency stays in hospital. Over time he did get physically stronger and a wheelchair was adapted with moulded padded plastic made to Garry’s shape. This was wonderful, he learnt how to turn the wheels of the wheelchair, he didn’t have the strength to push forward but was able to go backwards and get around the bungalow. He came along well, even being taken on holiday to Butlins with the staff for a few days.

His feeding and choking was becoming more of a problem and I had a call to say the Multi-disciplinary team, physiotherapist, dietician, district nurse, and the carers wanted a word with me. I met with them a couple of days later who informed me that it was becoming impossible to feed Garry, his choking when eating was becoming life-threatening and they felt the only answer was a peg feed, which meant a feeding tube inserted directly into his stomach. This, Garry would have hated, he loved his food, there was very little else for him to look forward to. It would mean no further food by mouth.

In the past when Garry was unwell I had always stayed with him overnight in hospital because I felt the nursing staff did not understand or had the time to attend to his needs. He couldn’t tell anyone if he felt uncomfortable and needed his position changing, or was thirsty and needed a drink, people tended to walk past him not sure how to react.

Before arrangements were made for the insertion of the feeding tube, I had another phone call from the carer at the bungalow to say Garry had been taken to hospital but this time he wasn’t responding to treatment. After all these years, was this the call I’d been dreading?

My husband and I rushed over to the hospital to find Garry lying unconscious in a side room. He had a saline drip keeping him hydrated. I didn’t think he looked as ill as I’d seen him during previous hospital admissions. A nurse came in and said he wasn’t responding to treatment, he had pneumonia; it was a matter of waiting to see what would happen.

I naturally stayed there with him overnight, the staff kindly put a reclining chair for me next to his bed. Garry slept and didn’t move all night, his breathing wasn’t laboured as it had been in the past and in the morning there was nothing I could do for him other than give him a little wash and make him comfortable.

That morning many family members came to see him, I think, all sensing that this could be the end. My son who was in the Air Force and stationed in South Wales managed to get leave but it was a 5 hour journey up to North Wales.

Garry’s sisters, my husband and myself stayed by his side the whole day only leaving to grab a cup of tea. At almost 5 o’clock that afternoon Garry stopped breathing…. minutes before his brother arrived from South Wales which was devastating.

Garry was buried 5 days before Christmas 2001 at the age of 37 years.

How different his life would have been if I had not been given those dreadful tablets

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What was the birth defect scandal linked to the drug?

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[/vc_column][vc_column column_padding=”no-extra-padding” column_padding_position=”all” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_link_target=”_self” column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”3/4″ tablet_width_inherit=”default” tablet_text_alignment=”default” phone_text_alignment=”default” overlay_strength=”0.3″ column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid” bg_image_animation=”none”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row type=”in_container” full_screen_row_position=”middle” column_margin=”default” scene_position=”center” text_color=”dark” text_align=”left” overlay_strength=”0.3″ shape_divider_position=”bottom” bg_image_animation=”none”][vc_column column_padding=”no-extra-padding” column_padding_position=”all” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_link_target=”_self” column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”1/1″ tablet_width_inherit=”default” tablet_text_alignment=”default” phone_text_alignment=”default” overlay_strength=”0.3″ column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid” bg_image_animation=”none”][vc_column_text]THE SUN: DRUG SCANDAL What is Primodos and what was the birth defect scandal linked to the drug?

The oral hormone-based pregnancy test Primodos was given to women in the UK in the 1960s and 1970s by their GPs.

Now, parents claiming their babies were affected by the drug have said they’re preparing to sue its makers and the Government.


Primodos was a hormone-based medication given to pregnant women to detect pregnancy between 1958 and 1978.

What is Primodos and what is it used for?

Primodos was a hormone-based medication given to pregnant women to detect pregnancy between 1958 and 1978.

Around 1.5million women in Britain were given Primodos.

It consisted of two pills that contained high levels of synthetic progestin and oestrogen hormones.

Those hormones would be later used in the morning after pill.

What was the Primodos pregnancy test drug?

Primodos maker Schering instructed women to “take one tablet on each of two consecutive days.

It said: “Bleeding follows in three to six (rarely as long as ten) days, if there is no pregnancy.

“An existing pregnancy is unaffected by Primodos.”

It was removed from the market in 1977 after concerns were raised but they were not proven.

In 1978, Primodos was discontinued after doctors noticed an increase in the number of deformed babies born to mothers who had been on the drug.

Primodos was manufactured by the drug company Schering, now part of Bayer, which continues to deny it caused deformities in children.

What birth defects has Primodos allegedly caused and how have people suffered?

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Damning report exposes three health scandals

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[/vc_column][vc_column column_padding=”no-extra-padding” column_padding_position=”all” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_link_target=”_self” column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”3/4″ tablet_width_inherit=”default” tablet_text_alignment=”default” phone_text_alignment=”default” overlay_strength=”0.3″ column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid” bg_image_animation=”none”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row type=”in_container” full_screen_row_position=”middle” column_margin=”default” scene_position=”center” text_color=”dark” text_align=”left” overlay_strength=”0.3″ shape_divider_position=”bottom” bg_image_animation=”none”][vc_column column_padding=”no-extra-padding” column_padding_position=”all” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_link_target=”_self” column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”1/1″ tablet_width_inherit=”default” tablet_text_alignment=”default” phone_text_alignment=”default” overlay_strength=”0.3″ column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid” bg_image_animation=”none”][vc_column_text]DAILY MAIL: If we only ever sanctify the NHS, its harrowing failures will NEVER be cured, says IAN BIRRELL as a damning report exposes three health scandals

By IAN BIRRELL FOR THE DAILY MAIL

Daniel Mason was born half a century ago without hands, with missing toes, a malformed mouth and impaired vision.

From an early age, he — and his family — had to deal with people asking about his disabilities. The impact on his life has been considerable.

His car, clothes and eating implements must be tailored to his needs. He has not been able to form intimate relationships. Not surprisingly, he has suffered bouts of depression.

We must accept that everyone, even doctors and nurses, can make errors. And it would be far kinder to distressed families not to drag out legal battles for years, writes Ian Birrell (file photo)

Daniel’s mother Daphne long suspected the cause of his problems was a powerful hormone tablet called Primodos that was given to women to determine whether they were pregnant. But when she raised her concerns with doctors, they were dismissed.

Now, at last, Daphne has been vindicated with official confirmation this week that her fears were right, in a 277-page landmark review by Baroness Cumberlege into three separate health scandals that has exposed a litany of shameful failings by the NHS, regulatory authorities and private hospitals.

 

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Healthcare system ‘unresponsive and defensive’ over safety concerns – review

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[/vc_column][vc_column column_padding=”no-extra-padding” column_padding_position=”all” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_link_target=”_self” column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”3/4″ tablet_width_inherit=”default” tablet_text_alignment=”default” phone_text_alignment=”default” overlay_strength=”0.3″ column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid” bg_image_animation=”none”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row type=”in_container” full_screen_row_position=”middle” column_margin=”default” scene_position=”center” text_color=”dark” text_align=”left” overlay_strength=”0.3″ shape_divider_position=”bottom” bg_image_animation=”none”][vc_column column_padding=”no-extra-padding” column_padding_position=”all” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_link_target=”_self” column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”1/1″ tablet_width_inherit=”default” tablet_text_alignment=”default” phone_text_alignment=”default” overlay_strength=”0.3″ column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid” bg_image_animation=”none”][vc_column_text]THE MAIL: “Harrowing” stories of pain and suffering have been laid bare in a report which concludes that patients came to “avoidable harm” because the healthcare system failed to respond in a speedy and appropriate way when serious concerns were raised about some medical treatments.

By Press Assc. 8th July 2020

A scathing inquiry into three NHS scandals sets out how patients were “dismissed” and “overlooked”.

The healthcare system has a “glacial” and “defensive” response to concerns over treatments, the inquiry found.

The review examined how the health service responded to concerns over pelvic mesh – which has been linked to crippling, life-changing complications including chronic pain, infections and loss of sex life; the anti-epilepsy drug sodium valproate – which has been linked to physical malformations, autism and developmental delay in many children when it is taken by their mothers during pregnancy; and hormone pregnancy tests such as Primodos – which are thought to be associated with birth defects and miscarriages.

The system “does not know” how many women have been affected by these scandals, the reviewers said.

They detailed “heart-wrenching stories” of how treatments provided on the NHS had “damaged lives” and highlighted how campaigners have fought for decades to “achieve acknowledgement” of their suffering.

“We met with hundreds of affected patients and their families … it became all too clear that those who have been affected have been dismissed, overlooked, and ignored for far too long. The issue here is not one of a single or a few rogue medical practitioners, or differences in regional practice. It is system-wide,” the review states.

More than 700 families from across the UK affected by the issues gave “harrowing details of their damaged lives”, which Baroness Cumberlege, chairwoman of the review, described as “heart-wrenching stories of acute suffering, families fractured, children harmed and much else”.

 

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Reaction to Cumberlege Review

[vc_row type=”in_container” full_screen_row_position=”middle” column_margin=”default” scene_position=”center” text_color=”dark” text_align=”left” overlay_strength=”0.3″ shape_divider_position=”bottom” bg_image_animation=”none”][vc_column column_padding=”no-extra-padding” column_padding_position=”all” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_link_target=”_self” column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”1/1″ tablet_width_inherit=”default” tablet_text_alignment=”default” phone_text_alignment=”default” overlay_strength=”0.3″ column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid” bg_image_animation=”none”][vc_video link=”https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ppbNb2Txixc”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row type=”in_container” full_screen_row_position=”middle” column_margin=”default” scene_position=”center” text_color=”dark” text_align=”left” overlay_strength=”0.3″ shape_divider_position=”bottom” bg_image_animation=”none”][vc_column column_padding=”no-extra-padding” column_padding_position=”all” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_link_target=”_self” column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”1/1″ tablet_width_inherit=”default” tablet_text_alignment=”default” phone_text_alignment=”default” overlay_strength=”0.3″ column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid” bg_image_animation=”none”][vc_column_text]Marie Lyons receives the outcome of the Cumberlege Review. After years of campaigning by families, an independent review has found that children suffered “avoidable harm” from the failure to regulate the drug Primodos in the 1960s and 70s.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

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Matt Hancock

[vc_row type=”in_container” full_screen_row_position=”middle” column_margin=”default” scene_position=”center” text_color=”dark” text_align=”left” overlay_strength=”0.3″ shape_divider_position=”bottom” bg_image_animation=”none”][vc_column column_padding=”no-extra-padding” column_padding_position=”all” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_link_target=”_self” column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”1/1″ tablet_width_inherit=”default” tablet_text_alignment=”default” phone_text_alignment=”default” overlay_strength=”0.3″ column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid” bg_image_animation=”none”][vc_video link=”https://youtu.be/RZNnKQeI9F8″][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row type=”in_container” full_screen_row_position=”middle” column_margin=”default” scene_position=”center” text_color=”dark” text_align=”left” overlay_strength=”0.3″ shape_divider_position=”bottom” bg_image_animation=”none”][vc_column column_padding=”no-extra-padding” column_padding_position=”all” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_link_target=”_self” column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”1/1″ tablet_width_inherit=”default” tablet_text_alignment=”default” phone_text_alignment=”default” overlay_strength=”0.3″ column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid” bg_image_animation=”none”][vc_column_text]Matt Hancock’s apology in response the Cumberlege Report was screened across the majority of news channels.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

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Nicky Gubbins – Sky News

[vc_row type=”in_container” full_screen_row_position=”middle” column_margin=”default” scene_position=”center” text_color=”dark” text_align=”left” overlay_strength=”0.3″ shape_divider_position=”bottom” bg_image_animation=”none”][vc_column column_padding=”no-extra-padding” column_padding_position=”all” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_link_target=”_self” column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”1/1″ tablet_width_inherit=”default” tablet_text_alignment=”default” phone_text_alignment=”default” overlay_strength=”0.3″ column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid” bg_image_animation=”none”][vc_video link=”https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Omp9hu3OzK4″][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row type=”in_container” full_screen_row_position=”middle” column_margin=”default” scene_position=”center” text_color=”dark” text_align=”left” overlay_strength=”0.3″ shape_divider_position=”bottom” bg_image_animation=”none”][vc_column column_padding=”no-extra-padding” column_padding_position=”all” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_link_target=”_self” column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”1/1″ tablet_width_inherit=”default” tablet_text_alignment=”default” phone_text_alignment=”default” overlay_strength=”0.3″ column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid” bg_image_animation=”none”][vc_column_text]Hundreds of families that have been wronged by the Primodos scandal have finally been recognised. An independent review found that children suffered ‘avoidable harm’ from the failure to regulate Primodos, a drug used for hormone pregnancy tests.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

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‘I trusted my doctors’: the women fighting for justice after medical procedures

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[/vc_column][vc_column column_padding=”no-extra-padding” column_padding_position=”all” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_link_target=”_self” column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”3/4″ tablet_width_inherit=”default” tablet_text_alignment=”default” phone_text_alignment=”default” overlay_strength=”0.3″ column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid” bg_image_animation=”none”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row type=”in_container” full_screen_row_position=”middle” column_margin=”default” scene_position=”center” text_color=”dark” text_align=”left” overlay_strength=”0.3″ shape_divider_position=”bottom” bg_image_animation=”none”][vc_column column_padding=”no-extra-padding” column_padding_position=”all” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_link_target=”_self” column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”1/1″ tablet_width_inherit=”default” tablet_text_alignment=”default” phone_text_alignment=”default” overlay_strength=”0.3″ column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid” bg_image_animation=”none”][vc_column_text]THE GUARDIAN: An inquiry into the harmful effects of medical treatments prescribed to female patients in England has highlighted a series of scandals

By The Guardian. 8th July 2020

Jacqueline Ciseau, 64, was 17 when she became pregnant in 1973. Her doctor recommended a hormone pregnancy test, which confirmed she was expecting a baby. She had a straightforward pregnancy and delivery, but when her daughter was two or three years old, Ciseau became concerned as she hadn’t started speaking or reached other developmental milestones. Ciseau went back and forth between doctors but never got a clear explanation for her daughter’s disability.

She mentioned the hormone pregnancy test, but said that doctors dismissed this as a possible explanation. “The way they treated us was appalling,” she said.

It was only in the 1980s, when she read an article in the Manchester Evening News about Primodos that she felt convinced there was a connection. “Primodos is 40 times the strength of the contraceptive pill,” she said. “You don’t have to be a genius to think that if you give that to a pregnant woman, it’s not going to do the foetus any good.”

However, despite safety concerns around Primodos dating from the 1960s that eventually led to its withdrawal as a pregnancy test, the manufacturer Bayer Pharma (formerly Schering) has consistently denied that there is evidence the tests caused abnormalities in children. “Still today we do not have an answer, we are still struggling to get justice,” said Ciseau. “We’ve been fighting for 50 years. I’m 64 and my husband is 73. I want justice, so our daughter can be looked after when we are no longer around. It’s our daughter who is the victim.”

 

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[vc_row type=”in_container” full_screen_row_position=”middle” column_margin=”default” scene_position=”center” text_color=”dark” text_align=”left” overlay_strength=”0.3″ shape_divider_position=”bottom” bg_image_animation=”none”][vc_column column_padding=”no-extra-padding” column_padding_position=”all” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_link_target=”_self” column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”1/1″ tablet_width_inherit=”default” tablet_text_alignment=”default” phone_text_alignment=”default” overlay_strength=”0.3″ column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid” bg_image_animation=”none”][vc_video link=”https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MP0BRPhFe10″][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row type=”in_container” full_screen_row_position=”middle” column_margin=”default” scene_position=”center” text_color=”dark” text_align=”left” overlay_strength=”0.3″ shape_divider_position=”bottom” bg_image_animation=”none”][vc_column column_padding=”no-extra-padding” column_padding_position=”all” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_link_target=”_self” column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”1/1″ tablet_width_inherit=”default” tablet_text_alignment=”default” phone_text_alignment=”default” overlay_strength=”0.3″ column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid” bg_image_animation=”none”][vc_column_text]Did the drug Primodos have the potential to malform babies in the womb? talkRADIO’s Nick De Bois speaks to Jason Farrell about how campaigners may face disappointment.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]