Parents share terror of unjustified child abuse diagnoses by former University of Wisconsin doctor

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Mark on skin triggers abuse complaint

After their constant drooling of the 5 month old baby irritated and cracked skin on his chest, his parents sought medical attention. But their pediatrician’s colleague, who saw the baby that day, instead focused on a mark on his left arm.

The pediatrician referred the family, who were living in Madison at the time, to the UW Health Child Protection team for more than four hours of extensive testing including an eye exam and an attempted shot. blood, but without success.. The baby “had bruises all over his arms from all the needle sticks,” his mother recalls.

The baby’s mother, a psychiatric nurse practitioner, who knew the mark was due to her son’s habit of sucking on her arm, was told, “‘The kids won’t do that when they’re six months old. “. “

In medical records, Palm wrote that “the case is diagnosed as seriously concerning for the physical abuse ”, and that Knox reviewed the case and agreed to it.

A police officer and a CPS employee closed their files after seeing the baby suck his left arm several times in the hospital.

Parents have asked to remain anonymous due to the stigma surrounding allegations of child abuse.

False medical information handed over to the authorities

The Shebestas first brought Henry to UW because their pediatrician sent them there. The doctor treated Henry during an episode of flu-like symptoms that did not resolve and after an MRI found bleeding in the baby’s brain.

He warned the parents that UW doctors would question them by protocol as they had no explanation for the bleeding. He told the Shebestas that he would vouch for them.

Dr Bermans Iskandar, who led a team of neurosurgeons caring for Henry, reported finding “chronic subdural collections”, or bleeding, on both sides of the baby’s brain. Henry will eventually undergo successful surgery to relieve the bleeding.

The day before surgery, tThe Shebestas were referred to the hospital’s child protection team. DDuring the couple’s initial interviews, a detective and a CPS employee provided shocking new and false information about their son’s condition.

Greg Shebesta recalled that a detective said that Henry had three separate brain bleeds that occurred on three different days. Someone, they were told, had intentionally injured their son, and he now had brain damage. They suggested that the caregiver might be to blame, but the Shebestas insisted that the woman – that they fully trust – would never hurt Henry.

“It was the first time we had heard this information, and it devastated both of us,” Katie Shebesta wrote in a letter to hospital officials the couple did not send for fear of reprisal.

When they returned to Henry’s hospital room, neurosurgeon Iskandar was preparing Henry for a bedside procedure. They asked him if what they had just heard was true.


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