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Hospital investigating case

Alanah Menz is slowly recovering after a spinal abscess.
Alanah Menz is slowly recovering after a spinal abscess. Christopher Chan GLAMENZ

ALANAH Menz doesn't recall much about the day that changed her life forever.

The now 19-year-old woke up in June last year unable to move her legs, so her parents rushed her to the Gladstone Hospital at 7am.

"I remember a doctor or nurse telling me to stand up and I said, 'I can't' and he said, 'Yes, you can'," Alanah said.

"I just remember collapsing."

But her mother Leonie Menz remembers the day well.

She said the treating doctor told her Alanah's symptoms were "all psychological" and left her in a room until 3.30pm, only popping his head in for a minute.

After Alanah had finally been transferred to Rockhampton and then Brisbane, Ms Menz said it was too late.

"Brisbane discovered our daughter had an epidural abscess, which had caused permanent spinal damage," Ms Menz said.

"He also stated that we had 24 hours from when she lost the use of her legs to find the abscess and remove it for a good outcome.

"The director of the Royal Brisbane Women's and Children's Hospital came to see us at our daughter's bedside and stated she was not happy with our daughter's treatment and would be arranging for an investigation."

However Ms Menz said she had tried to contact the hospital and had not heard anything further about the investigation.

Gladstone Hospital director of medical services Dr Andy Humphrey said that he could confirm that an investigation had begun as a result of Alanah's treatment at Gladstone Hospital.

"I can assure all Gladstone residents that if any system or human failings are identified in the review, Queensland Health will learn from them and implement measures to avoid them in future," Dr Humphrey said.

 

Hard road ahead

In the last two months Alanah has taught herself to walk using crutches but she can only walk 100m

Alanah has learnt to drive a car again, with her left foot

Topics:  gladstone hospital



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