Latest insights from our experts

Posted 25 June 2019
by Stuart Bramley

Autistic boy, five, died after ‘doctors gave him ten times standard dose of insulin’

Small boy playing with toy cars

Last year, a five year old boy with autism was given ten times the correct amount of insulin after he was misdiagnosed with diabetes, according to his parents. He later died in hospital. A report prepared for the coroner concluded that the boy did not have diabetes – instead it is thought that he had sepsis. An inquest into his death is due to commence in October.

With reference to this Daily Mail article, infection law solicitor Stuart Bramley writes –

“Although there are many instances where sepsis would have resulted in a death even if the medical staff had done everything they possibly could, this appears to be very different. Although it is difficult to be too critical before the inquest is held and the full detail is known, from the account given in the Mail it does seem that Shay’s tragic death was very much avoidable. It is of course true that high blood sugar levels can indicate diabetes, a condition which is increasingly common in children. Sepsis is accompanied by other symptoms which would not arise in diabetes and if the inquest reveals that Shay had these, there will be difficult questions to be asked of those who made the incorrect diagnosis.

If it had not been for what is referred to as the ‘law of transparency’ (presumably the duty of candour introduced in 2014) I wonder if Shay’s parents would have been notified of the truth here. Either way, a coroner’s inquest is a very penetrating examination of what led to a death and I very much hope that Laura and Martyn get the answers they badly need here. ”

For more information or advice, please do not hesitate to get in touch with our experienced team of medical negligence solicitors.

Want to know more?

Request a call back or ask us a question using our quick-contact form.
Alternatively you can call us on 01392 207020.

About the author

Stuart Bramley

Partner and Solicitor

Partner and solicitor with over 25 years' experience of medical claims and inquests