May 26, 2024

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France: Baby born with 26 fingers and toes on knee

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A judicial case in France26 Toes, Foot on Knee – Parents talk about Alice's (2) ordeal

A woman in France gave birth to a baby with 26 fingers, no thumb and no leg on the left knee. The parents are now suing the gynecologist who took care of the pregnancy.

Karin Ludold
Van
  • Little Alice from France was born with 26 fingers, no thumb and one leg at the level of the left knee.

  • Alice suffers from Laurin-Sandro syndrome, a very rare genetic disorder.

  • After several surgeries, the now two-year-old is considered severely disabled.

Michael and his wife really loved being parents. When Alice was finally born on December 31, 2021, in Saint-Quentin, 150 kilometers northeast of Paris, the joy seemed justified – but the shock: the newborn had 26 fingers, a thumb and a leg at the level of the left knee. A nightmare began for the couple and their child – after multiple amputations, Alice is now considered 80 percent disabled.

“He was able to tell the gender of the baby, but didn't see that it had 26 fingers.”

Christophe Donnet, Alice's parents' lawyer

When their daughter was seven months old, the parents received a diagnosis: their daughter suffered from Laurin-Sandro syndrome, an extremely rare genetic disease. The mother did not understand that the problem was not known in advance: “We asked for our child to be healthy,” she told the portal “L'Aisne nouvelle”. She never missed a pregnancy test and had an ultrasound every month. “Everything seemed wonderful,” recalls Father Michael.

The parents sued the obstetricians

After birth, the baby was transferred to Amiens hospital. The pediatricians who treated them were at a loss. To date, very few cases of Laurin-Sandro syndrome have been documented in the medical literature. “Less than 20,” the father shakes his head. “We had a better chance of winning the lottery,” jokes Alice's mother.

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A year-long odyssey begins for the parents: they take Alice to physiotherapy three times a week, plus doctor visits and check-ups. In September last year, Alice had her leg amputated and major arm surgery. The second leg is scheduled to be removed on May 21. “The surgery on the other hand is expected to be done in October. “Because Alice doesn't have a thumb, they put an extra finger in place of it,” explains Mikael. This will help the child understand things in future.

Alice's parents have now taken legal action against the gynecologist who looked after the pregnancy. “He was able to tell the gender of the child, but he did not see that he had 26 fingers, that the left leg was curled, that the left leg had no skeleton and that the leg was at the height of the knee,” the family's lawyer, Christophe Donnet, said before the Saint-Quentin court.

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