In my 8 May 2011 post on the Queensland case of Alder v Khoo, I stated: ‘While it is true that the majority of cases can be diagnosed via a DNA test, what is contentious is that the minority of those children may have been misdiagnosed as having cerebral palsy, when indeed they had Angelman’s syndrome.’
In an email to me dated 26 August 2011, Lance Alder (litigation guardian for Trent Alder) rightly pointed out that the opposite is also true: there may be children out there who have been misdiagnosed as having Angelman’s syndrome, when indeed they had cerebral palsy.
These inferences are significant for the reason that cerebral palsy post-hypoxic event is caused by doctor’s negligence whereas Angelman’s syndrome is a genetic condition, meaning that if medical tests prove that the child has Angelman’s syndrome, the condition is not doctor-caused and so the doctor is held not liable for the injury. It should be noted that due to the plausible chance of misdiagnosis, there may be doctors who have gone scot-free due to a misdiagnosis as Angelman’s syndrome, which was very nearly the result in this case.
I have to thank Lance Alder in this blog post for emailing me the most recent results of Trent Alder’s medical tests which show that he has in fact global brain damage and complex epilepsy caused by the medical negligence of Obstetrician Dr Paul Khoo and the Rockhampton Hospital on 3 January 1989. The test results can be found here.
The facts of the case and judgement can be found here. The appeal at the Supreme Court of Queensland (i.e. the 2011 case of Alder v Khoo, Dalton J did not decide on question of liability but rather on the issue of the plaintiff undergoing medical tests. Nevertheless, the above test results prove that Trent Alder did not have Angelman’s syndrome, and that his condition was caused by the negligence of the Defendants.
 ‘Alder v Khoo: When One Test Can Signify the Difference Between Medical Negligence and Genetic Abnormality’ (8 May 2011) Malaysian Health Law Debates <http://msianhealthlawdebates.blogspot.com/2011/05/alder-v-khoo-when-one-test-can-signify.html> (Accessed 7 September 2011)
 The test results can be found here: <https://docs.google.com/document/d/1GHl7nF6-PVufrjiboYEAka1UlIzjiCKJOjIHvVkUV3E/edit?hl=en_US> (Courtesy of Lance Alder)