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Doctors say Sanjot Kaur’s injuries are a result of her being ‘shaken violently’

Violent shaking may have led to severe brain damage for one–year–old Sanjot Kaur who is undergoing intensive neurological rehabilitation at Andheri’s Kokilaben Ambani hospital, doctors there said.

The baby is responding well to treatment only now, several months after it started. Her brain injury was diagnosed in March by the doctors who termed it `shaken baby syndrome’– a condition in which the child suffers severe brain damage and bleeding due to intentional and vigorous shaking.

According to Sanjot’s mother Danvir, the baby was enrolled in a day–care centre called Brainworks in Raheja Vihar in Chandivali. "On the fourth day when I went to collect her, she was completely unconscious. I asked the caretakers if something had happened but they said the baby had been sleeping for a very long time," said Danvir.

When Sanjot showed no signs of recovery, she was rushed to the Seven Hills hospital nearby where a full body scan revealed severe brain injury. She started having severe seizures the next day. As the hospital did not have a pediatric neurologist, she was shifted to Kokilaben Ambani hospital and was put on a ventilator.

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"The baby came to us in a state of coma. We first brought her seizures under control and used our neuro protection strategies to prevent secondary injuries to her brain," said pediatric neurologist Dr Pradnya Gadgil at tached to Kokilaben Ambani hospital. The entire clinical pattern of the baby’s injuries was a classic case of non–accidental injury, she added.

According to Dr Gadgil, the baby had a severe hemorrhage in the space between the brain and the skull, a severe injury to the parenchyma or brain matter, a bilateral retinal hemorrhage and a skull fracture as well.

"There was no evidentinjury from the outside thus ruling out the possibility of a fall. We also did metabolic examination to rule out any internal causes of bleeding. Therefore the whole clinical pattern pointed out to vigorous shaking," explained Gadgil adding that after more than five months of intense neuro–rehab, the baby only shows the development of a four–month–old. Doctors say that while there may be a complete physical recovery in three to four years,cognitive recovery will not be achieved due to the severe brain damage.

Doctors from the Seven Hills and Kokilaben Ambani hospital promptly reported the case to the police."The Powai police came and took our statements and said they were investigating further. But nothing has happened after that," said Danvir, who also complained to the authorities at Brain works Learning Systems Pvt Ltd. which has now been taken over by another pre–school chain.

"I had initiated an internal inquiry into the matter then. But it remained inconclusive," said Kedar Balwally, former vice president of Brainworks. While the parents allege that the baby was shaken with force to stop her from crying, the franchise owner said that the baby must have suffered the brain damage while traveling in an aut orick shaw or car with her mother.

Times of India
21 Sep 2013

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