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munchausens syndrome by proxy false accusation

(23 Posts)
bethramsden Wed 08-Feb-12 19:18:51

Good Evening all,

I have a son with some problems that are still being diagnosed including but not restricted to complete bowel failure as in his bowel does not work and does not appear ever to have but at aged 3 when i was querying his issues he was misdiagnosed, when i objected and questioned the doctor i was secretly accused of having munchausens syndrome by proxy ( this is documented in his notes of which i have here ) the school and dr in question were also secretly trying to arrange for my son to be removed from my care, i am now trying to fight back as i only found all this out last year, could someone tell me how i can get the apologies and information i need the school are refusing to cooperate and the board of governors refuse to investigate saying it has been too long now ( it has been 10 years) but the school are fully aware of the situation now and have admitted to keeping secret diaries on my son and they wont acknowledge my subject access request the local education authority keep telling me to go to the welsh assembly but i am drawing a blank on getting help, i am so angry and upset with all this i am desperate to stop this hapening to another mother who dared question a dr or to help anyone who has been falsely/secretly accused of fighting back, as i didn't lose my son i have not been silenced so i can shout from the rooftops also the dr in question refuses to answer any letters asking where he got his research from in a carefully worded letter found online but he is scarily enough dr in charge of child protection in hereford hospital, and his speciality is neuro disabilitys in children yet he missed soina bifida occulta, and problems with my sons central nervous system..

please do contact me or give feed back to help i would appreciate this...

outofbodyexperience Wed 08-Feb-12 19:38:39

do school even still have the records? there is a limit on how long cp stuff is kept for without a recurrence/ further incident? they might not even be able to comply if everything has been destroyed?

i think you have two issues that you need to deal with separately (although they dovetail). if you think your child was misdiagnosed and that his care was negligent, you need to discuss this with a solicitor specialising in medical negligence. if the solicitor believes it to be the case, your son will be entitled to legal aid. this should deal with the health side.

re the school records and apparent 'secret diaries' and a plot to remove your son from your care - if you only found out last year, i would suggest that it wasn;t ever a real possibility, and may have been discussed and investigated in passing to make sure he was safe. indeed, they didn't question you at all at the time, nor were you aware of any ss activity. so they obviously concluded he was safe in your care.

i presume you have copies of the notes from ss. just make a formal request to all bodies you believe have secret notes under dp to see what they hold. i do understand you are upset, but presumably they were acting on good faith to protect your son. sometimes misdiagnoses occur - so if you think the mis-dx was negligent, then chase that. but try not to take this as a personal affront. you can't be secretly accused of having munschausen's by proxy. it might have been a 'query - munschausen's?' note on your file which was investigated and found to be false, but at no point were you dx with this or it was suggested publicly to be the case. no loss of status or whatever occurred. it is quite common for parents to be subjected to a degree of scrutiny for children with sn. and sometimes there are truly horrible mistakes made and children are taken into care. this did not happen here, and i suspect that you will be very lucky to get an apology for what was a routine investigation that came to nothing.

your son has now been dx correctly? and is getting the correct care?

sometimes it's necessary to look forwards and choose where we put our energy. you can choose to look backwards and pursue this, but you need to make a definite decision that you have the energy and time and commitment to pursue what might end up being an utterly futile exercise. maybe your time might be better spent looking forwards? i do understand why you are upset, but you need to be very sure what you are taking on.

bethramsden Wed 08-Feb-12 19:52:36

he is still being diagnosed but is under great ormond street now and waiting for surgery,

we have a solicitor but they cannot make the dr or school apologise that's something i have to do.. the notes clearly show the meetings being held and several times it was written... don't tell mum.. they kept making appointments for me to go to meetings if i turned up alone theyd have all these meetings and say things along the lines of are you sure you are giving him his medicine. we heard you threatened to smack your son ( i have never smacked i don't believe in it i find other ways for discipline) if i turned up with my mother or father they cancelled the meetings without an explanation. it all stopped when a health visitor came on an unannounced visit to my house ( i had several of these) and my son was running around with no pull ups on which i frequently did to air him whilst home and she witnessed for herself the lack of bowel control and put in a report stating that and only then did socail services say there was no reason to continue.. i have spoken to the school since ( my nieces still go there) they have admitted the diaries they kept and have also admitted they have not sent to education authority or kept them in his school records, also it is becoming apparent that the school either lied to the dr who made the accusation by playing down my sons problem or lied to social services about the severity of his problem as he was statemented and received help in school at lunch time every day. The solicitor we have is great and we have a great case for medical negligence for son but maybe i am being greedy i want apologies from them all not just for the accusations but my son has suffered needlessly for 10 years sad

outofbodyexperience Wed 08-Feb-12 20:10:43


let the legal side run and concentrate on getting help for your son. if he still hasn't been diagnosed ten years later then there was obviously an element of doubt with a definitive dx.

the notes from school were surely kept under a child protection remit? if they weren't passed on, then presumably it was because school did not have enough cause for concern - ie they were content that ds was safe in your care? from what the sw said, they had been asked to do this by ss? and the investigation was terminated when they were provided with proof of a medical condition?

i don't know enough about cp in schools to know how the reports should have been kept, how long for, and when destroyed tbh, but there are a few posters on here with that expertise. mrz might be one of them.

i know it isn't nice to have found out you were investigated by ss, but you should be slightly reassured that they found you entirely without blame and that your son was safe in your care. so, i kind of think that they were doing their job. as were the school. there are loads of threads about cp on here, try an advanced search to see if you can find any info on how long reports should be kept for etc. i'd be willing to bet that if it was ten years ago and the investigation was terminated that some might have been destroyed.

the needless suffering for your son is being dealt with by the medical negligence claim. you want an apology because you were wrongly accused (except you weren't, as no-one accused you). what do you want the spology to say?

i can tell you what it will say now, and it will probably be of no comfort at all - it will be along the lines of - 'due to mis-dx of your son, it was our responsibility to carry out an investigation into his family life in order to determine if he was safe. in these circumstances where knowledge of the investigation might prove unsafe for the child, we are not required to disclose to families. our investigation proved that ds was not in any danger and had a caring family who were seeking support for his medical condition. we understand that you are unhappy that our policies meant that we were obliged to investigate your family, but hope you understand that our primary consideration is for the safety of the children it is our job to protect. we sincerely apologise for any distress this has caused.' or something along those lines. would it be worth the heartbreak of going over it all again? (genuine question. this stuff can be really bad for your mental health)

you won't get anything from health (the dr) until the med neg claim is done. and what you get will depend on the outcome. the pct will handle it all. absolutely pintless to expect an apology from (him?). how long are you into it now?

bethramsden Wed 08-Feb-12 21:49:04

sadly the school are still behaving this way, many of the mums at the school have had visits by ss due to information received from the school, all the investigations find out nothing and indeed many complaints about the school have gone in.
my son has not yet been diagnosed, however, it is very clear in his notes that the accusation of msbp has been critical in the mis dx one letter clearly states i draw your attention to the notes blah blah and my son was then left again on laxatives.. the original diagnosis was merely constipation and he was left on laxatives for 10 years, the dr didnt like me questioning why he had 2 eneams in 4 days and complaining about thats evident in the notes,
because of this accusation my son was ignored and left and he does not nor did not have a case of constipation but conditions far more serious... and whilst i appreciate that i may or may not get an apology i believe that i was not the only mother that had this done behind their backs as this accusation was done in 2004 when roy meadows was still seen as credible and his views still being listened to it is indeed very well documented that social services investigations during this time increased so much they could not cope due to the amount of msbp accusations made, i have a friend who works for ss and he states that even now many many women did not know they were being investigated at all...

If you are a mother with a young child who has a very difficult-to-diagnose illness, you may find yourself looking down the aggressive barrel of a child protection agency that will take your child into foster care. The courts state that you will only have very limited supervised contact with your child again, if at all. There is no evidence that you caused the child's illness-just speculation and supposition. (Often these very sick children are prematurely born, may have congenital or genetic problems or may have suffered an adverse reaction to drugs; or the parent may have challenged a doctor's medical treatment.) My son was born 5 weeks early, i challeneged dr jaffa on so many occasions of his treatment i lost count, and his illness was not that difficult to diagnose if they had bothered to investigate instead of blaming the mother, spina bifida is a condition you are born with as a specialist in neuro disabilitys in children he should have tested/checked for this as ds symptons indicated this, the cysts in his neck and spine are very large and need removing they should have been spotted several years ago if someone had bothered invesstigating, the problem with his central nervous system was picked up in an outpatients appointment with a few questions from the specialist...

it was negligence in the nth degree but i am fighting mine and my sons corner... but as stated more and more women are finding out now that they have been accused of this, if done to your face you can be silenced by ss if done discreetly then they have no grounds for silencing, so whilst i am allowed to do i am going to shout the injustice of it all from the rooftops and make sure no other child suffers because a dr doesnt like his "opinion" being questioned and thats is all it is sometimes just his/her opinion.. well the drs need to know that us mums have one too and our instinct to protect our kids outweighs their opinion...

outofbodyexperience Thu 09-Feb-12 00:24:51

not disagreeing with any of that.

i have one child with cerebral palsy due to a birth injury and an ongoing med neg claim (about 3 or 4 years in now) and another child who had suspected sb occulta at birth. but thanks for letting me know what it is. wink

my third child also suffers from encopresis, which is what i am assuming the original mis-dx was, and has been on various meds for the last 5 years (he's ten now), including sometimes having a series of enemas nightly for three days to clear his system out when soiling becomes unbearable. <shrugs> i'm not sure why you think this would not be an appropriate treatment if that was the dx. it's unpleasant, but it isn't negligence.

i hope you get the apology you are seeking. if the school are following current cp guidelines, i suspect you might not.

good luck with your claim.

try not to let it take over your life though. your son needs you now.

and try to remember that they were doing it to protect the children, in whatever cack handed manner that may have been policy at the time. and discredited now.

try not to lose sight of what matters in amongst all the anger.

bethramsden Fri 18-May-12 15:23:19

Quick update:
ds has so far now been diagnosed with cpina bifida occulta, tightened achillies and ham strings, he has 2 very large fluid filled sacs in his spine and his central nervous system is not working properly, all of these apparently have been present since birth... he is now going for surgery on 7th june to see if his bowel issues can be helped but we have now been told if he hasd received the correct diagnosis 10 years ago he wouldnt be as he is now...

madwomanintheattic Fri 18-May-12 15:26:51

Hope the surgery goes well x (Tis oobe back in body)

PipinJo Mon 21-May-12 00:14:51

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

rainbowclouds Tue 05-Jun-12 00:28:32

Hi There,
I'm so with you on this one,i really hope you get an apology smile we are two years into our complaint .Our son started school in Jan 2010 and all was fine until we started to ask the school if they could take a bit more care with what he touched as we noticed he was coming home with reactions on his skin (he had confirmed allergies) well that opened a whole can of worms! the school nurse was very quickly called and a meeting was held where i was spoken to like i did not know what i was talking about.This was followed by a demand for our ds to be retested at hospital for allergies (this was already done 8mths prior) as it was the holidays and he had only had it done we refused! this was promptly followed by a letter from ss with a cp meeting !!! we attended shocked.When we attended they had parts of the childrens names wrong they did not realise i had a partner of 18yrs and he was the father of all four children.I was accused of Munchausen's syndrome by proxy.When i tried to speak i was told to be quiet.One of the schools stated they always had concerns yet they never aired them until now, after i complained about there lack of care! the health authority state there had been concerns for the children for over 12 years but didnt flag them until i refused the test !! at the cp meeting ss where sent in to investigate the family which they did but found all ok ,at the second cp meeting ss gave there report which stated ' no evidence was found of abuse in the children past or present' all children where happy and healthy.The school where asked to meet whith us parents for better communication but still to this day they refused !We found out the school had gone behind our back and had requested tests. We started our complaints against the offending school and the health authority immediatly after the case was closed as i was accused as having a severe mental health problem during the meeting by health professionals and one of the schools.I now have written conformation from my gp that i did not and dont have any mental health problems.It all appears to have started in 1997 when on a routine develpoment check a dr wrote on a piece of scrap paper 'i think the mother has a touch of Munchausen's syndrome ' and then tucked this into my dd's notes .I never saw that Dr again.Many lies where used and now i have records i can prove otherwise.My children where ignored when they went to the doctors because of my mis- diagnoise of Munchausen's syndrome by proxy.My solicitor said he had three other similar cases that week to mine ,scary!! Im not giving up until i get my apology.Its ruined my life.I so wanted to foster but i dont think i can now sad Im scared to take the kids to the doctors.One persons silly comment has changed my life forever.

Im all for moving forward in life and i do intend to, but i do believe this has to stop ! while abuse against children has to stop, parents need to be protected from false allegations of abuse which has a life long affect!

Good luck xx

PipinJo Wed 06-Jun-12 18:21:44

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

rainbowclouds Wed 06-Jun-12 21:47:05

Our case is currently with the parlimentary health ombudsman and they have informed us while the information can not be blacked out, a note can be put along side the information that is wrong with the correct information or informing readers of the errors !! personally i would prefer the blatent label of MSBP removed from the records when it was cleary so wrong in the first place sad

Angierobbie Mon 13-Aug-12 14:47:09

I was wrongly accused of munchausens two years ago and my son was removed from my care 6 months later I was totally vindicated and he returned home but still havnt received any form of apology, it's disgusting how easy it is for medical staff to take such control and get away with it because of "guidelines"

Oblomov Mon 13-Aug-12 21:30:48

I am so very very sorry to read these posts.
I only experienced 1/100th of what you have. But even mine ws very very damaging.
Once, a top consultant apologised to my dh and I.
but there were 2 other, more serious issues that I never got an apology for.
Realistically, apologies are very rare these days. Because they know that negligence accusations follow. And multi £ law suits then follow. So do you honestly think this dr will apologise. And would it really be heartfelt.
I supect not. And so that wouldn't soothe or heal your hurt, would it?
This pain, anger is so very very hard to heal. I fear that you seek what you can not be given. sad

saintlyjimjams Thu 16-Aug-12 08:51:53

I found out that a SALT who had never met me, who had never met my son, told the school he was about to attend that I was 'well known for being a mother in denial'

WTAF? Yes so well known for being in denial that I spotted that ds1 was autistic 2 years before diagnosis and queried when told 'he definitely isn't autistic'.

This all arose because I had complained to a (different and utterly useless) SALT when she said 'there's no point giving him SALT as he isn't capable of anything'.

I couldn't complain as it would have outed the person who told me. I might write a blog post on it one day though, I know quite a few professionals follow my blog.

Traceydeborah Sun 09-Sep-12 15:45:33

I would like to say that I was accused of Maunchausans by proxy, FII as it is now know by Great Ormond Street Hospital.

My son had been treated there for 10 years and had EDS and gastro failure. As with mostly of our kids their disorders are invisible.

I was cleared and the lies told by that hospital who just needed their chiid protection numbers up was exposed. It was the worst experience of my life and has left me unable to work.

Please stay well clear of Great Ormond Street hospital x

LMMN Mon 23-Sep-13 12:06:13

i am reopening the thread as I am in a simlar situation

My daughter has been under great ormond st from 4 months
Only recently has she been diagnosed with the reason for her illhealth - EGID, and only then when I pushed and pushed

Rather sadly the allegation of FII has come from my husband [now ex] when i reported him physically hurting her

She was removed last November whilst they looked into it
I was finally cleared by a court appointed expert, 3 weeks ago

However I have quite literally fallen apart and my subsequent mental health issues are now being used by the local authority to suggest my daughter returns to her father - who has since admitted repeatedly hurting my daughter

i am looking for evidence on the effect of these false allegations and removal of children on mothers

does anyone have any?


undentified Sun 30-Mar-14 15:57:12

Watch soon there will be a Lawsuit shortly in Iowa on MSBP

EffectiveCommunication Fri 16-May-14 23:21:08

Hi, old thread I know, I hope this gives hope to those who posted on this thread in the past.

EDSUK, Professor Rodney Grahame - Professor of Clinical Rheumatology, Dr Anand Saggar - Senior Consultant in Clinical Genetics, Paul Storey QC - Extensive experience in complex cases involving allegations of serious non accidental injuries especially those concerning scientific or medical issues, Alexa Storey - Barrister, particular interest in the exploration in Court of scientific and medical issues are the guest speakers at a House of Parliament meeting to discuss this subject.

Oblomov Thu 25-Sep-14 11:25:44

Just benchmarking.

andyinhighlands Tue 10-Nov-15 10:39:26

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

andyinhighlands Tue 10-Nov-15 10:40:47

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

KnightofWands Sun 16-Apr-17 09:56:59

There is nothing wrong with raising a suspicion of FII and perhaps nothing wrong with a preliminary referral. However, the vast majority of such cases will prove false. That does warrant an apology and records should be appropriately corrected. What seems to be missing is: adherence to good practice in dealing with suspected FII; sufficient training on how to deal with it; and a lack of recognition that 90% to 99% of cases (depending on how preliminary the dx is) will prove false - coupled with procedures to put that right ...and yes, apologise.

The first step for an alcholic is to admit the problem. The first step forr those involving themselves in FII is the same. Then they can learn from their mistakes, improve procedures and procedures and more efficeintly screen cases and focus scarce resources.

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