Gold Coast mother opens up after mistakenly swallowing oven cleaner at The Point

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A mother has opened up about her painful struggles of living without an oesophagus and stomach after a restaurant mistakenly gave her oven cleaner as a remedy for her hiccups.

Amanda Merrifield believed she was swallowing vinegar when she was handed the spoonful of toxic chemicals at The Point, on the Gold Coast, in 2013. 

The chef had mistaken the oven cleaner for cooking liquid, which was kept in a similar looking bottle, before then-owner Paul Jeynes handed it to Mrs Merrifield.  

The 46-year-old immediately collapsed in pain and has since endured more than 80 surgeries, 120 hospital visits and seven years of agony, Courier Mail reported.

A mother (pictured, Amanda Merrifield) has opened up about her painful struggles of living without an oesophagus and stomach after a restaurant mistakenly gave her oven cleaner as a remedy for her hiccups

A mother (pictured, Amanda Merrifield) has opened up about her painful struggles of living without an oesophagus and stomach after a restaurant mistakenly gave her oven cleaner as a remedy for her hiccups

‘After the first two months in hospital I was on the operating table every week for months, and then every two weeks, three weeks, four weeks, trying to save my oesophagus,’ she said. 

Mrs Merrifield had her oesophagus and stomach removed and has to take medications and some injections at least three times a day just to keep her body ‘somewhat liveable’.

‘Mentally and physically, it’s broken me,’ she said.

The distraught mother has also lost her career prospects as a lawyer as well as her social life.

Her time is spent mostly at home with every life decision centred around her injuries.

Husband Bob and nine-year-old son Jack have been with her every step of the way.

‘My hope is to stay alive and see my son grow up and not feel like I’m a burden all the time,’ Mrs Merrifield said. 

Queensland Health, Blue Care and private health insurer Bupa have provided some relief for Mrs Merrifield.

The insurer of the restaurant has also paid for some of the expenses.

But Mrs Merrifield and her family are slowly bending under the strain of hospital bills.

The 46-year-old immediately collapsed in pain and has since endured more than 80 surgeries, 120 hospital visits and seven years of agony

The 46-year-old immediately collapsed in pain and has since endured more than 80 surgeries, 120 hospital visits and seven years of agony

Mrs Merrifield had her oesophagus and stomach removed and has to take medications and some injections at least three times a day just to keep her body 'somewhat liveable'

Mrs Merrifield had her oesophagus and stomach removed and has to take medications and some injections at least three times a day just to keep her body ‘somewhat liveable’

The family has also launched a $5million claim against the restaurant in 2018.  

No-one has been charged over the incident and the local council told the restaurant to label its products more clearly.

Ms Merrifield earlier told reporters then-owner Mr Jeynes has never apologised to her.

‘Never, I’ve never heard from him again, ever,’ she said,

However Mr Jeynes said he has ‘apologised profusely’.

The restaurant has since been sold to a new owner and has a new name. 

Source


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