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Mother paralysed after giving birth needs to raise £150k to help her walk again

Published 24/04/2016

A mother is trying to raise £150,000 to help her walk again after she was left paralysed from the waist down following the birth of her daughter.

Irrum Jetha, 34, has been wheelchair-bound since Amelie was born on August 29 2014.

She was admitted to the Chelsea and Westminster Hospital for what was thought to be a normal delivery, and given an epidural - a pain killing injection to the back - at 3.30am.

When feeling did not return to her legs later that day, doctors conducted a scan which revealed a blood-clot had compressed Ms Jetha's spinal cord - leaving her paralysed.

The clinical scientist and her husband, Adam Betts, are now trying to raise enough money to allow Ms Jetha to receive specialist treatment at the Zentrum der Rehabilitation Geerlofs centre in Pforzheim, Germany.

Following a preliminary examination at the centre last October, Ms Jetha was told that with three months' treatment, she may be able to take a few steps using a walking frame.

One day after giving birth, the new mother had to endure a life-threatening operation and was unable to see her daughter for six days.

She said: "It hadn't been an overly long or painful labour, but even if it had, it would all have seemed worth it. We were the complete family we had yearned to be.

"As I watched Adam cut the umbilical cord as he crowed: 'It's a girl', I remember thinking it was the happiest moment of our lives. Soon we would be carrying our precious baby across the threshold of our home, a family instead of a couple."

But Ms Jetha was not released from hospital until a few days before Christmas - some four months later.

She continued: "But even now I've never spent a single moment alone with her. Because of my disability I can't look after her alone, there are too many things that could go wrong. I can't bathe her alone or change her myself.

"There have been so many mother and daughter bonding moments that I have missed. And I will never get those back. I've gone from being an active young wife to being entirely dependent on Adam.

"I had nothing in common with the other new mums and I was constantly reminded of what I was missing. Every time I saw a mother walking with her baby I was in tears."

Mr Betts, a research associate at Imperial College in London, took Amelie home and began looking after her alone and all but gave up work, becoming his wife's carer.

The couple have instructed lawyers to investigate if there was any medical negligence by the hospital.

Laura Craig, from Slater and Gordon solicitors, said: "Irrum, like so many parents, was dreaming of when her first child came into the world.

"Unfortunately, what should have been a magical moment was over-shadowed by the unimaginable horror of her being left paralysed.

"The bravery she has shown since that horrific incident is remarkable and awe-inspiring. Slater and Gordon is investigating whether delays in treatment, connected with her epidural, led to her becoming paralysed."

The couple are hoping to raise £150,000 and anyone wanting to donate can do so by visiting gofundme.com/irrumjetha.

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