On Monday, an American neurologist offering experimental treatment to baby Charlie Gard arrived at Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH) to examine the 11-month-old and discuss his condition with other medical professionals involved in the case.
American neurology specialist Michio Hirano has examined terminally ill baby Charlie Gard at Great Ormond Street Hospital
— Sky News Newsdesk (@SkyNewsBreak) July 17, 2017
Dr. Michio Hirano, a neurology professor at New York’s Columbia University Medical Center, offered his services to Charlie’s parents, Chris Gard and Connie Yates, after multiple British and European courts ruled against their wish to keep their son on life support.
Charlie suffers from a mitochondrial disease that many claim has caused irreversible brain damage. But because the illness is so rare, there is far from a consensus among the medical community.
Last week, the child’s parents presented the British High Court with new evidence from Hirano, suggesting that an experimental treatment could ameliorate Charlie’s condition. If proven true, Hirano’s findings would refute GOSH doctors’ claims that Charlie has no quality of life and no chance of recovering at all.
“In my view my keeping Charlie on artificial ventilation will not cause significant harm because he does not seem to be in pain,” Dr. Hirano said, according to Reuters.
Hirano has been granted an honorary contract that will allow him to see Charlie and have full access to his medical records. His discussions with GOSH doctors are likely to shape the final outcome of the months-long legal battle, which will determine whether Charlie lives or dies.
Hirano is expected to report his findings to High Court Judge Nicholas Francis, who is expected to make a final decision on Tuesday, July 25.