A Texas family claims they lost custody of their children after doctors misdiagnosed their sick infant as being abused — a diagnosis that later turned out to be incorrect.
Jason and Lorina Troy welcomed their second son into the world in May 2015. They soon noticed that the baby, Jason Jonathan Troy, had grown ill, and his head continued to grow. They took Jason to several doctors and specialists.
In a interview with KXAN-TV, the couple alleges that doctors began to accuse them of child abuse, saying that the baby’s brain was swelling as a result of being repeatedly shaken.
The diagnosis set off a chain reaction for the Troy family. The infant, known as JJ, and his older brother were removed from the home and placed into foster care. Jason was charged with two felony counts of child abuse, which carried a potential sentence between five and 99 years.
Jason lost his job, and the family had to sell their home to pay attorney expenses, KXAN-TV reports.
As things progressed, Jason Troy began to question his own actions. “There was some doubt,” he tells the station. “Like, was there something I did?”
Staunchly maintaining their innocence, the Troy family continued to press for answers. Finally, a medical expert in Maryland — more than 1,500 miles away — managed to properly diagnose JJ. He had benign external hydrocephalus, a rare condition where spinal fluid can build out outside of the brain, leading to swelling.
After Jason Jonathan was properly diagnosed, authorities dropped the charges against Jason, and the children were reunited with their family — but the Troy family says that lasting damage was done to their children.
“My oldest son lost 20 pounds within six weeks of being taken from us,” Lorina Troy told KXAN. “Medical reports show that he showed signs of sadness and depression.”
The family has not sued the doctor who misdiagnosed their son, and the two-year statute of limitations has expired.
Instead, the family has decided to raise awareness about the issues of misdiagnosis.
Last week, they met at the Texas state capitol with state Rep. James Frank (R-Wichita Falls), and shared their story. According to Fox7Austin.com, they are planning to meet with their district representative soon.
Lorina Troy also wrote a book about the family’s struggles.
“There were times when the loss of our children, the unbelievable accusations against my husband and the feeling that we were powerless to right the wrongs – were overwhelming,” Lorina Troy tells KXAN-TV. “But, we went through the most challenging events of our lives and it has made us stronger. Now, we can take our terrible situation and what we have learned, and help others in similar situations.”
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