A white mother is accused of faking her six-year-old black daughter’s illness and forcing the child to undergo more than 500 appointments and unnecessary surgery.
Sophie Hartman, 31, claimed that the little girl suffered from a rare neurological disease, Alternating Hemiplegia of Childhood, but doctors now say the child is perfectly healthy.
According to court documents, Hartman has taken her adopted daughter to appointments since she was around two years old, and subjected her to what doctors called an ‘unnecessary medical procedure’ with a surgically implanted feeding tube.
The little girl, who lives with her mother in Renton, Washington, was also made to wear leg braces and used a wheelchair despite doctors insisting that they were not needed, Q13 FOX reported.
A lengthy investigation into the case charges Hartman with ‘medical child abuse’, stating that specialists at Seattle Children’s Hospital requested a consultation after becoming concerned the mother was asking for ‘increasingly invasive procedures based upon undocumented signs and symptoms reported by the parent’.
Reports note that a concern that ‘this pattern has resulted in unnecessary medical testing, medication, procedures, surgeries and debility of this child.’
The six-year-old, who was adopted from Zambia in Africa when she was an infant, was removed from her mother’s care and observed at a local hospital for 16 days.
Court documents say that at no point during her admission were there any findings or reported symptoms to support any of her prior diagnoses.
Search warrants revealed that the girl was diagnosed with the neurological disorder, but medical providers said this was based on information about her symptoms provided to them by Hartman.
These symptoms, including severe seizures, had not been observed by anyone other than Hartman, the documents allege.
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Source: Daily Mail