A distraught Victorian mother has revealed the anguish of hopelessly watching her teenage daughter die while giving birth.
Mooroopna woman Sommer Warren, 18, died at Shepparton’s Goulburn Valley Health in October 2014, nine days past the date she was due to give birth.
Evidence presented to the Coroners Court of Victoria on Tuesday found Warren had no pulse for up to three minutes before hospital staff began CPR.
A panel of doctors concluded she died from a hypertensive crisis, causing a seizure which led to cardiac arrest.
Warren’s mother Leisa Scammell told the inquest her life has fallen apart since losing her first-born child five years ago.
Sommer Warren died during labour at a hospital in Shepparton. An inquest has heard the hospital failed to induce her five days before her death, despite urgent calls from a local doctor.
She lambasted the Shepparton hospital for its treatment of her daughter during the pregnancy, and after she was admitted to give birth.
Scammell has refused to go back to the hospital since, opting for her other two daughters to seek medical treatment elsewhere.
“Sommer put her trust in medical professionals and they simply weren’t listening to her fears,” Scammell told the inquest.
“I watched on hopelessly as Sommer deteriorated while in labour. My last memory of my daughter is seeing her eyes roll back in her head and going into a seizure.
“I’ve become obsessed with finding answers why Sommer died.”
Scammell said her grandson Lincoln’s birthday would “always be remembered as a day he lost his mum”.
“At no stage did I contemplate losing my girl or that she wouldn’t be holding her baby son,” she said.
The inquest was told Warren experienced high blood pressure after being induced into labour on October 6, 2014.
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She became drowsy and her eyelids started flickering, but there was a significant delay in attempts to revive her when she had no pulse.
Expert doctors were split on whether Warren suffered the serious condition pre-eclampsia, which could have categorised her pregnancy as high-risk.
Dr. Forbes McGain told the court that the “real trouble is on the final day”, referring to the time anaesthetist Jayakumar Rangaswami administered an epidural.
In a written statement, Dr. Rangaswami said Warren was distressed before being given the epidural but he put that discomfort down to labour pain.
The inquest before coroner Audrey Jamieson will resume on May 20.
By Oliver Caffrey