Reports suggest that two mothers died from herpes after they were given Caesarian sections. 

Kimberly Sampson (29), and Samantha Mulchay (32) are calling to open inquests despite not being informed of any connection between their deaths. 

HSV-1 is one of the two herpes simplex strains. It rarely causes death in healthy individuals. Ms. Sampson, Ms. Mulchay, and their six-week-old sons, died of an HSV-1 infection in July and May 2018.

BBC reports that the East Kent Hospitals trust said they could not find the source of infection, and that the surgeon had no history of the virus.  

A pathologist who investigated the deaths believed the women had been infected before they were admitted to hospital. 

But sexual health consultant Peter Greenhouse said it was ‘very unlikely that they acquired (the virus) before they got into hospital’, adding it was most likely that the infection was given to the two women by the surgeon accidentally in the C-section.

It is possible that the surgeon may have suffered from a herpes infection, which could have “directly seeded herpes into women’s abdomens.”  

Ms Sampson was a barber and lived with her daughter of three years in Whitstable. 

Kimberly Sampson, 29, was a 'brilliant mummy' who was 'fun', 'loving', and had 'lots of friends', her mother Yvette Sampson said

Kimberly Sampson, 29, was a ‘brilliant mummy’ who was ‘fun’, ‘loving’, and had ‘lots of friends’, her mother Yvette Sampson said

Samantha Mulchay, pictured with her husband Ryan, went into labour four weeks ahead of her due date and went into the William Harvey Hospital in Ashford, run by the same Trust as Ms Sampson's hospital, in July 2018

Samantha Mulchay, pictured with her husband Ryan, went into labour four weeks ahead of her due date and went into the William Harvey Hospital in Ashford, run by the same Trust as Ms Sampson’s hospital, in July 2018

Ms Mulchay went into labour four weeks ahead of her due date and attended the William Harvey Hospital (pictured) in Ashford, run by the same Trust as Ms Sampson's hospital

Ms Mulchay was in labor four weeks before her due date. She attended the William Harvey Hospital (pictured), which is run by the same Trust that runs Ms Sampson’s hospital.

Ms Sampson had a normal pregnancy and went to Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother Hospital in Margate’s labour ward. She thought everything would be okay, but she was having a slow labour. Her mother kept telling her that the baby was still stuck.  

Because of their compromised immune system, pregnant women have a greater risk of contracting herpes.

Treatment can improve the survival rates of patients with herpes.

However, for people with compromised immune systems this could drop as low as 40%, according to certain estimates. 

Women who are pregnant have an increased risk of getting serious illness due to their immunocompromised status. 

High-risk individuals who are undergoing chemotherapy, or recovering after an organ transplant, can also be exposed.

Because their bodies lack natural immunity, the risk of contracting herpes is higher for those with immunocompromised. 

In severe cases, herpes can lead to serious medical conditions including encephalitis and meningitis. This is a form of inflammation in brain tissues that occurs as a result of the infection.

A disseminated herpes infection is also possible. This refers to the spread of infection from one area (such as the mouth), to another part of the body. It can lead to organ failure. 

There are two types of herpes, herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) and herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV-2.

HSV-1 is transmitted mostly by oral to-oral contact. This causes blisters known as “cold sores” but can also result in genital herpes.

HSV-2, the only sexually transmitted virus that can cause genital herpes, is the most common.

Both forms of herpes can be life-long and incurable, but they are manageable.   

After her child was born, doctors performed a C section. Ms Sampson required a blood transfusion due to injuries she sustained during the surgery.  

Following two days of intense pain, she requested to be discharged along with her baby. She could not walk and was in great discomfort. 

She went home with her mother. But the pain continued to get worse. Yvette stated that she could scream from pain if even a little touch was made. 

Ms. Sampson was taken by ambulance to the hospital. 

Doctors believed she had bacterial sepsis, so Ms  Sampson was sent back to the maternity ward and given antibiotics, but her condition became worse. 

After undergoing a number of surgeries, doctors were unable to diagnose and treat her infection. Eight days later she was admitted to the hospital. A consultant microbiologist recommended that Aciclovir be tried. This antiviral medication is used for treating herpes.

Ms. Sampson received a devastating herpes diagnosis at Kings College Hospital London.

On May 22, she died. 

Six weeks later Ms Mulchay (a nursery nurse who lived less than 20 miles from Ms Sampson) died the same illness.

Ms Mulchay was in labor four weeks before her due date. She went to the William Harvey Hospital Ashford run by the same Trust that Ms Sampson’s in July 2018.  

After 17 hours of painful contractions, she was exhausted and in pain. She was then taken to the hospital for a C section after worrying blood tests. 

Although Ms Mulchay delivered a healthy girl to her, doctors still kept an eye on the baby.

After three days of being swollen and high blood pressure, her condition began to decline. 

Doctors also though Ms Mulchay had bacterial sepsis, but, like Ms Sampson, antibiotics did not work.

Ms Mulchay spent four days in intensive medical care. A doctor recommended antiviral medication but the microbiology section advised that they continue to take antibiotics.  

Drs called London’s hospital to help. They tried to stabilize the patient but could not save it.  

A post-mortem revealed that Ms Mulchay died from multi-organ failure following a ‘disseminated herpes simplex type 1 infection’, meaning an overwhelming infection caused by HSV-1. 

It was determined that neither the mother nor her child were infected. 

The ‘primary infected’ was the first herpes infection they had. 

Public Health England sent documents to the Sampson family. The emails revealed that Ms Sampson was connected with two East Kent Hospitals Trust bodies and staff, as well as some NHS entities, and one private lab named Micropathology.  

The emails are partially redacted by PHE in order to conceal the identities of those who were involved. someone from the Trust reveals that the same two clinicians – a midwife and the surgeon who carried out the C-sections – had taken part in the deliveries of both babies. 

The families were notified by Katrina Hepburn, who stated that there wouldn’t be an inquest. She acknowledged the similarities but said there wasn’t a connection.  

In a statement, Dr Rebecca Martin, East Kent Hospitals’ Chief Medical Officer, stated that she had deepest sympathy for the family and friends of Samantha and Kimberley.

After the deaths of Samantha, Kimberley, and Samantha in 2018, the ‘East Kent Hospitals (PHE), sought out specialist assistance from Public Health England. After consulting with a variety of experts, the Trust’s Healthcare Safety Investigation Branch concluded it wasn’t possible to determine the cause of the infection.

The surgeon who did both caesarean section was free from any past or present infection.

The treatment of ‘Kimberley’ and ‘Sammy’ was determined by the symptoms they displayed during their illness. Their families are in our thoughts and we will answer all their questions.