UAE | Health

Dubai couple blames doctor’s prescription for miscarriage

Dubai Healthcare City investigating case

  • By Janice Ponce de Leon, Staff Reporter
  • Published: 15:45 August 4, 2012
  • Gulf News

  • Image Credit: Supplied
  • Image for illustrative purpose only.

Dubai: A couple has filed a complaint against a doctor for alleged negligence that they claim led to the loss of their baby.

Filipino expatriates Eric and Melinda Bartolome were due to have their first child in August after four years of marriage.

I’m seeking answers. I just want to know what happened, in just 21 hours to be exact, after taking the medicine. I really think it’s the medicine that caused it

Melinda Bartolome, who suffered a miscarriage

But they told Gulf News they lost their baby boy at 19 weeks after Melinda claims she developed a negative reaction to an antihypertensive drug which was prescribed by a Dubai Healthcare City (DHCC) hospital doctor, identified as E.M.F., in May.

A hospital official told Gulf News they are investigating the case.

In her complaint, Melinda said she was referred to Dr. E.M.F. after her previous doctor had gone on vacation.

During their first check-up on May 15, they did an ultrasound on the foetus.

“She told us that I was okay, the baby is fine and normal. She even pointed at the baby’s mouth when it opened and made us hear his heartbeat,” Melinda said in her letter to DHCC.

“I’m seeking answers. I just want to know what happened, in just 21 hours to be exact, after taking the medicine. I really think it’s the medicine that caused it,” Melinda told Gulf News.

DHCC in a statement said they’re extending their “deepest sympathy to Ms Melinda Bartolome on the loss of her baby. The complaint is currently being investigated and no additional information is available at this time.”

Dr E.M.F. meanwhile said Melinda’s blood pressure reading was 130/70, which her previous doctor indicated as normal.

The doctor then changed her medication from Aldomet — which was prescribed by Melinda’s two previous doctors — to Trandate, with the generic name labetalol.

“She [Melinda] was on a very old fashioned blood pressure medication called Aldomet. So, she was moved to labetalol, which is the current practice in terms of management of blood pressure problems in pregnancy,” Dr. E.M.F., who has been in practice for nearly two decades, said.

Three hours after taking the drug, Melinda reportedly felt some tingling sensation in her scalp, fever and chills.

By 2am, she noticed some light brown watery discharge on her underpants, which continued for three hours. She also felt dizzy and heavy.

When they decided to go to the hospital the morning after, Melinda felt a sudden pain in her abdomen.

Within two minutes, she was in labour.

“From where I was, I could see the baby come out, feet first. When he finally breached, he just fell right into my hands,” Eric told Gulf News, breaking into tears.

Dr. E.M.F. said that the drug was safe and that what had caused the miscarriage was a uterine infection. No laboratory results could confirm this, however.

“I know it’s a bereavement. In 19 weeks it’s extremely tragic to lose a baby. The fact is the waters breaking is not something that we can predict. There was nothing to indicate that there was any infection. We don’t have these abilities to predict. We’re humans, we don’t have a crystal ball, I’m afraid. So, we see people today, they might go into labour tonight,” Dr. E.M.F. said.

Comments (8)

  1. Added 20:32 August 9, 2607

    Our deep sympathy and hearts go out to the couple for their loss. Before placing any blame, i prefer to hear from hospital after investigating the case. Guys, anything can be the cause. Please be patient before getting angry with the doctor. Innocent until proven guilty. God Bless!!

    Ihsan, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

  2. Added 20:32 August 9, 2607

    Please stop pointing fingers before you know much. A doctor with 2 decades of experience would not be negligent.. And the person/patient feels that it might be due to the medication so its too early to speculate, point fingers and ruin careers and lives. I wish the media would be more responsible and report these things once things are more clear.

    Jobby, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

  3. Added 20:32 August 9, 2607

    I also have hypertension and during my pregnancy, my doctor prescribed me just Aldomet and I was alhamdulillah so fine throughout. Whats the use in changing the medicine when it was perfectly just working fine for the patient? And yes, doctors are too way far from our country's doctors. Before delivery I was already enrolled for the Caesarian operation. When I went for labor, I knew within seconds I will deliver my baby but I was suddenly injected and had slept and CS was done. Yes I did suffered the painful consequences of giving birth un-normally.

    Maryam, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

  4. Added 20:31 August 9, 2607

    I am a mother so i feel so sorry for the couple who suffered a very tragic experience like these. As most of us are alien in this country, it is really very difficlut to trust doctors and specially the type of medication they are giving. This needs to have a proper investigation to know what exactly goes wrong and should be punished. Hope that justice will prevail

    Anonymous, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

  5. Added 20:31 August 9, 2607

    This is so disappointing news, honestly i don't trust doctors here. And i don't agree with what the doctor said, if that is his statement he should resign from his job because I will never have my baby and my life be endangered because of negligence. i heard lots of stories similar about this. Even will recommend surgery which is not even necessary so they can charge more. Some are not even qualified doctors. I just hope that justice will be served!

    Fate, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates

  6. Added 20:31 August 9, 2607

    I am not really sure if this doctor, E.M.F. knows her job well and it is really surprising to discover that such a respectable hospital accepted her. The statement she made, its pretty obvious she don’t prioritise her patient’s safety as well as to do her job to deliver the baby well. Isn’t it supposed to be in your hands Dr. E.M.F! what a shame!

    Minnie, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

  7. Added 20:31 August 9, 2607

    Its a wake up call for all Health Care Professionals to be careful. Prescribing medication is not easy, you need to assess the patient comprehensively before ordering or even in changing the drug and dosage. In my opinion, its a negligence...very clear its not an infection. As a health care provider, our duty is to prolong the life of each patient, not to harm them.

    kat, dubai, United Arab Emirates

  8. Added 20:31 August 9, 2607

    Please God save us from such doctors. Once I had a small pimple on my eyebrow, I visited a general practitioner, he referred me to an Eye specialist, he checks my eye and told me that we have to do a surgery, I ask him for What? I refused it, i go to another Asian doctor he gives me an ointment and one pain killer and one antibiotic tablet, I take medication for three days then i was 100% cure. Thank God

    Faraz, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates

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