New Mom Says She Lived With An Epidural Lodged In Her Back For Days

July 2, 2019  |  

Doctor hold syringe prepare for injection,Epidural analgesia,Epidural nerve block, spinal block,Health care concept.

Source: boonchai wedmakawand / Getty

A new mom shared a horrifying birthing experience while bringing her daughter into the world.

Florida mom Selena Gray, 18, said she had bouts of excruciating pain and suffered from walking difficulty after she discovered the epidural catheter was still in her back after giving birth to her baby girl, affectionately named Serenity. Gray, 18, gave birth on June 26 at Sacred Heart Hospital in Pensacola, Florida.

“After she delivered, they attempted to take the epidural out and they couldn’t,” Gray’s mom Patricia Alvarado, told the Pensacola News Journal. “Between the 48 hours that we were there, she had five doctors come in, tugging and pulling on her back, attempting to get the epidural out and they could not get it out.”

Gray said she experienced knots in her back and had to be carried in order to walk. After seeing her daughter’s struggle on a separate occasion when a sixth doctor tried and failed to pull out the catheter, Alvarado said she that she, along with Gray’s father, demanded that their daughter be discharged.

However, officials at the hospital felt weary regarding the procedure and denied their request, allegedly threatening to report the family to child services if they did leave, according to Alvarado.

So Alvarado decided to call 911 to transport her daughter to another facility, Baptist Hospital instead. But administrators there did not feel comfortable about removing the catheter either. Finally, a specialist at UF Health Shands Cancer Hospital in Gainesville volunteered to offer their services. Gray traveled in the ambulance for six hours on her side, along with her child’s father to reach the location. Finally, on June 28, the catheter was removed, and Gray was sent home the next day.

Alvarado said she was heartbroken that her daughter had such a “horrifying” and “traumatizing” experience and remains unable to breastfeed because of the pain. The road to recovery still remains unknown as Gray is currently using a walker to help her get around.

“It’s been crazy ’cause I still have a burning sensation in my hip and leg,” Gray said. “I’m kind of moving around on the walker a little bit but I’m having a lot of muscle spasms. Basically, day by day I’m trying to take it slow, ’cause every morning I wake up I just start right back over with the pain.”

She said the doctors at UF Health Shands could not give a detailed outlook regarding the future because of the situation’s scarcity.

“The doctor that removed the epidural just told me that this was the first time he’s ever seen anything like this and he couldn’t tell me really if in the future I’d have any problems,” Gray said. “He couldn’t even tell me 100% at all.”

But through it all, Gray says she holds no grudges. “They didn’t do their job properly,” she continued. “Just towards the doctors that did put the epidural in my back and didn’t really know what they were doing, I am a little upset with them, but you just forgive and move on, really.”

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