A grieving dad is seeking answers after his muscular dystrophy-suffering son died soon after surgery to improve his quality of life.
Dewsbury boy Arslan Aslam, who was 16, entered Manchester Royal Children’s Hospital on March 2 to have eight-hour surgery which would have allowed him to sit up straighter in his wheelchair and have more movement in his arms.
Though he seemed to be recovering well, Arslan’s family had to rush to the hospital five days later after Arslan suffered a cardiac arrest and showed no signs of life for about 25 minutes. He became brain damaged.
Arslan died in the Forget Me Not Children’s Hospice on March 25, leaving dad Mohammed, mum Nasreen, brothers Hassan, 22, Rizwan, 12, Armaan, eight, and sister Nadia, three.
Mohammed, of Clarkson Street, Ravensthorpe, said: “I don’t understand how it’s happened. It’s an absolute nightmare. There’s no closure, we are absolutely devastated.”
Their grief is compounded because Nasreen was sceptical about the operation – but the teen was desperate to have it done. “We didn’t really want him to go through all the pain,” Mohammed said.
The hospital have offered the family a meeting to talk through what happened, but Mohammed wants an explanation in writing to understand more clearly. “I’m in no fit state. I don’t want to say the wrong thing to anybody.”
A statement issued by the Central Manchester University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust said: “Our sympathies are with Mr Aslam and his family during this time.
“We are more than happy to discuss any questions that they have in relation to the sad death of their son, and ask them to contact the hospital directly.”
Mohammed paid tribute to his “bubbly” lad, who always helped his older brother Hassan – he also has muscular dystrophy.
On September 26 – two days after Arslan would have turned 17 – there will be an eight-mile sponsored walk or run from the family’s home in Clarkson Street, Ravensthorpe, to Forget Me Not Children’s Hospice in Huddersfield, starting at 2pm.
The family want to raise £1,000 for the hospice.
To find out more and to donate, visit mohammedarslan.aslam.muchloved.com.
Newsome High School, which Arslan attended, paid tribute to their pupil by placing a remembrance plaque for him and released balloons into the sky.
Professional boxer Waleed Din has worn a commemorative T-shirt for Arslan during recent bouts. A big fan of the sport, Arslan had also met Amir Khan at Cleckheaton Boxing Academy.