Trinidad: Ailing lawyer claims radiation poisoning

Trinidad: Ailing lawyer claims radiation poisoning
Cherry-Ann Rajkumar and her husband Marvin Ramnarine protest along Independence Avenue, San Fernando, yesterday. KRISTIAN DE SILVA
Cherry-Ann Rajkumar and her husband Marvin Ramnarine protest along Independence Avenue, San Fernando, yesterday. KRISTIAN DE SILVA

(TRINIDAD GUARDIAN) — An at­tor­ney is claim­ing she suf­fered ra­di­a­tion poi­son­ing at a pop­u­lar pri­vate nurs­ing home in San Fer­nan­do af­ter un­der­go­ing a CT scan.

Cher­ry-Ann Ra­jku­mar, 42, ac­com­pa­nied by her hus­band Mar­vin Ram­nar­ine held a sec­ond protest in three days call­ing for the nurs­ing home, which has not ac­cept­ed li­a­bil­i­ty, to re­lease the ma­chine’s logs.

Ra­jku­mar said the logs will as­sist her doc­tors in de­ter­min­ing the ex­act lev­el of the ra­di­a­tion she was ex­posed to so they could ad­min­is­ter the ap­pro­pri­ate treat­ment.

Last Fri­day, she protest­ed in front of the nurs­ing home and yes­ter­day she protest­ed in front of a com­mer­cial build­ing at In­de­pen­dence Av­enue, San Fer­nan­do.

Ra­jku­mar said she went to that par­tic­u­lar pri­vate nurs­ing home to have the CT scan done be­cause it was ad­ver­tised as the best med­ical clin­ic with on­ly brand new ma­chines.

“Just with­in two hours of do­ing the X-ray there on Mon­day June 11, 2018, I al­most went in­to a co­ma. My whole face burn up. My lips burn up. My hair, if you come home by me I have more than 100 bags of hair that dropped from my head. My eyes were blood­shot like Count Drac­u­la. My whole body start­ed to jerk and weak­ness like I was dy­ing, like al­most in a co­ma. I al­most died. I was in con­stant pain. It is on­ly like right now the pain is much less. But imag­ine be­ing in pain like if they dip your head in boil­ing wa­ter for eight months. I have not been able to work, mind my child, eat. It is ter­ri­ble. I am lucky to be alive be­cause the amount that I got in the head blast was more than Smokey and Bun­ty. So I am a walk­ing mir­a­cle, “ she lament­ed.

Ra­jku­mar said last week was the first time in eight months she had enough strength to walk.

She said, “Imag­ine all this hap­pen from a nor­mal X-ray and this could hap­pen to any­body in this coun­try.”

She said the nurs­ing home is in­sist­ing that the ma­chine was brand new. How­ev­er, she said a physi­cist from New Zealand was able to find out that the ma­chine which the nurs­ing home ad­ver­tised as brand new was ac­tu­al­ly 10 to 12 years old.

She was ad­vised that a ma­chine that age was sup­posed to be dis­card­ed and not used on hu­man be­ings. “What my doc­tors know is that I got be­yond two grays of po­si­tion ra­di­a­tion be­cause they told me that hair dam­age on­ly be­gins at above two grays. I re­al­ly sup­pose to get a frac­tion of a gray for a head CT scan,” she said.

Ra­jku­mar said she does not have the mon­ey to ini­ti­ate le­gal ac­tion and her fo­cus at this time is get­ting bet­ter.

In a three page re­port, which was for­ward­ed to T&T Guardian Dr David Evans, a med­ical physi­cist, stat­ed that he and a ra­di­a­tion on­col­o­gist as­sessed Ra­jku­mar and came to the con­clu­sion that she was ex­posed to ra­di­a­tion over­dose.

Ra­jku­mar com­plained that in the past eight months she has writ­ten sev­er­al let­ters to the nurs­ing home’s own­ers and to Health Min­is­ter Ter­rance Deyals­ingh, but noth­ing has been done.


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