BROKEN: Bianca Baxter with son Robert and husband Aiden play a waiting game at Yeppoon Hospital.
BROKEN: Bianca Baxter with son Robert and husband Aiden play a waiting game at Yeppoon Hospital. Trish Bowman

'It's tearing my family apart': CQ mum's surgery heartbreak

AT JUST 25 years old, Bianca Baxter's life has been put on hold in what appears to be a bureaucratic nightmare that is tearing the young mother's life apart.

Bianca was born with osteogenesis imperfecta, or OI, an autoimmune deficiency caused by a genetic mutation that gives her brittle bones.

She has experienced 99 broken bones, not including fractures in her fingers and toes. Pain is an everyday experience that Bianca has had to endure.

Sadly, the pain she is experiencing right now is a broken heart that she is unable to get vital treatment to enable her to get on with her life with husband Adrianand two-year-old son Robert.

Bianca said in October last year she got up off the lounge chair and felt pain in her ankle.

Knowing better than to ignore it, Adrian rushed her to Rockhampton Hospital, the first of many visits.

"After examination and multiple tests, the doctors diagnosed that my anterior talofibular ligament (ATFL) had disintegrated, other ligaments in my ankle are torn and ruptured," Bianca said.

"Many visits later, the orthopaedic surgeon in Rockhampton said he did not feel confident operating on me due to my OI and my irregular-shaped foot and referred me to Royal Brisbane Hospital.

"With referrals from Rockhampton Base and my GP in Yeppoon, I have been listed as a category 2 patient, which currently has a waiting time of 12 months for surgery."

Last Friday night, after experiencing extreme pressure under her cast, Adrianrushed Bianca to Yeppoon Hospital and she is still there.

Bianca said testing by doctors at Yeppoon Hospital indicated her ankle could not carry any weight and as she lives in a caravan at Bungundarra, they did not feel safe to allow her to go home.

"There is a step up to the caravan and I have to go into my relatives' home to use the bathroom which is simply not viable in my current state," she said.

"I am constantly in pain with this injury and it has been consistently swollen since October last year.

"It looks like I am in Yeppoon Hospital indefinitely with no sign of being able to have the operation I need any time soon.

"Before I came to Yeppoon Hospital I was just barely able to get around with a moon boot and crutches, now it's not possible at all.

"My GP has sent letters to try to expedite the wait time for my surgery but there is no sign of that happening at this point.

"I am appealing to the Brisbane Hospital to look at my case and see very clearly that I need help.

"This is tearing my family apart, Adrian is a plumber but can't take on work because he is too busy caring for our son Robert and when I am home, he is caring for me."

Bianca and Adrian have approached their GP and Member for Keppel Brittany Lauga to try to find a solution to their frustrating situation.

Bianca said her care at Yeppoon Hospital has been fabulous.

"The staff here have been wonderful and they can see the dilemma we have," Bianca said.

"We just want to find a solution so that we can get on with our lives."

Ms Lauga told the Bulletin she was looking into the matter.



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