Pathologist and mother give evidence at baby Noah Tyler inquest
- 15 May 2012
- From the section South East Wales
A mother whose baby died after being deprived of oxygen when he was born has told an inquest that she is "tortured" by the memory of his birth.
Noah Tyler died 10 months after suffering irreversible brain damage at the University Hospital of Wales in Cardiff, a pathologist said.
A midwife admitted making "catastrophic mistakes" and said she would regret it for the rest of her life.
Mrs Tyler and her husband, from Caerphilly, are suing for negligence.
The hospital has apologised to his parents, and the midwife in charge of the birth has been dismissed.
Pathologist Alistair Lammie told the inquest in Cardiff: "Noah's brain had been irreversibly damaged due to lack of blood and oxygen around or during birth."
Noah's mother Colleen Tyler, 31, told the hearing: "I was told I would hear him cry when they got him out but I didn't hear anything.
"He was very white, not how I expected him to look. No one said anything and I was left feeling confused.
"I was in a state of shock - I thought 'This cannot be happening'. I expected to be holding my baby by then but he wasn't there'."
The inquest heard how Noah was rushed to an incubator after his birth and placed on a cooling mat to prevent his brain being permanently damaged.
He spent the next months being treated by specialists at the 1,000-bed University hospital of Wales in Cardiff.
Midwife Julie Richards admitted she failed to take the necessary action after noticing that Noah's heart rate was dangerously high.
"With hindsight I would have acted differently - I don't know if I looked at the heart scan properly," she told the hearing.
"If I had I would have sent her [Mrs Tyler] immediately upstairs to see specialist doctors.
"The raised heart level could have meant foetal distress but it could have been because the mother was in discomfort.
"I chose the more innocent option."
Mrs Tyler said that nothing could prepare her for "what I was going to see, that little thing lying in the incubator with loads of tubes going into him".
"I could not process what was happening," she said.
"I keep replaying the birth in my head and torturing myself. What if I could have done anything different to save Noah, the thought just go on and on?"
Noah showed little signs of progress and was moved to a children's hospital, but he died on 23 December last year.
The inquest is due to last two days.