Tamil Nadu: Second burning baby in same family stumps doctors

  • KV Lakshmana, Hindustan Times, Chennai
  • Updated: Jan 18, 2015 00:36 IST

The mystery of the burning baby returned to haunt the Villupuram village family, where in a space of one year, the second child, nine days old, suffered burnt injuries when the infant was all alone in the small hutment.

The infant’s mother, Rajeswari, noticed her baby’s feet on fire when she came into the room on Thursday. Her husband, Karanan, a daily wager was out of the house. One year ago, the elder son of the duo, one-and-half-year-old (then) Rahul had caught fire three times, foxing the doctors then.

Rahul was put under observation for 15 days and doctors ran a series of tests and came to the conclusion that there was no combustible substance within the body and had surmised that the fire was due to external causes and discharged the baby.

On Thursday, within minutes of discovering her second son, just 9 days old, on fire, Rajeswari rushed him to the primary health centre. The baby developed what is described as spontaneous human combustion (SHC) syndrome. The couple have a daughter, Narmathaa, who was born in 2013. Rajeswari gave birth to her third child on January 9.

A doctor who treated the child said, “The boy is stable now. He had 10% burn injuries and is under treatment.”

The dean of government medical college, Villupuram, Dr Usha Sadhasivan, told Hindustan Times that she would refer the child and mother to Kilpauk Medical College in Chennai for further examination and treatment.

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