When new parents are awaiting the birth of their child, they have excitement and joy about how their lives are about to change. No parent expects or wants anything to go wrong. Unfortunately, birth injuries can and do happen, resulting in injury to the child and/or mother. In many cases these injuries are entirely avoidable and come as a result of the negligence or carelessness of medical staff during the mother’s pregnancy or during the labor and delivery process.
If this tragic scenario describes your circumstances, contact a caring and compassionate birth injury lawyer from TorkLaw. Our attorneys work alongside medical experts and experienced physicians who are able to assess the medical aspects of your case. We can then pursue compensation from the negligent party or parties. Your family could be eligible to file a claim which might result in a substantial settlement.
Frequently asked questions about birth injuries: FAQs About Birth Injuries.
Reasons for Birth Injuries
When a doctor is performing his or her job negligently, there is a slew of mistakes that they could make that may lead to injuries not only to the child but also to the mother. In severe cases, these injuries do not heal.
Common reasons birth injuries occur are:
- The medical professional failed to detect any signs of early fetal distress.
- The medical professional did not perform an emergency cesarean section as needed.
- The medical professional did not use birth-assistant tools correctly.
Common reasons that a mother may experience maternal birth injuries are:
- The medical professional did not diagnose and treat preeclampsia.
- The medical professional did not diagnose and treat gestational diabetes.
- The medical professional did not diagnose and treat various maternal infections.
Common Types of Newborn Birth Injuries
A birth injury occurs when there is damage done to the child through the birthing process. This typically occurs as the baby is in transit through the birth canal. Some birth injuries are so minor that they can clear up days after delivery, while others are so severe and traumatic that they never go away.
Throughout pregnancy and during the delivery process, a doctor must identify and address issues in a timely manner. A doctor that is careless, negligent or even reckless when treating a pregnant patient, may be risking a potential lawsuit if serious injury or death occur.
A knowledgeable birth injury lawyer from our firm may suggest there are three common categories of birth injuries: traumatic birth injuries, premature birth injuries, and fetal oxygen deprivation.
- Traumatic Birth Injuries: Sadly, this occurs to infants during the delivery process and is the result of mechanical forces such as compression or traction tools. Vulnerable areas such as the brain, spine, nerves, and bones can be injured, resulting in traumatic birth injuries. During childbirth, the position and size of the infant can cause complications. If the doctor and medical team does not act appropriately, they can cause the baby to sustain an extreme injury. If you believe that your doctor was negligent during the delivery, then you may want to seek legal guidance from a birth injury lawyer.
- Premature Birth Injuries: If a baby is born preterm, it could lead to serious complications. A birth injury lawyer may inform you that doctors have the responsibility of identifying factors that put the mother at risk for having a preterm pregnancy. The doctor should implement preventative strategies to keep this from occurring. Furthermore, if preterm pregnancy is imminent, the doctor should be prepared with medical strategies to help the infant’s lungs mature and protect their brain.
- Fetal Oxygen Deprivation: Another term for this injury is hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy and occurs when the infant receives insufficient oxygen during the time of delivery. It can lead to a dangerous brain injury but is usually preventable. A birth injury lawyer may advise you that the injury is often times the result of doctors and medical staff failing to identify and address fetal distress.
Common conditions that may arise due to poor medical care include:
- Cerebral Palsy. A disorder of the brain and nervous system that may impair the baby’s ability to see, hear, move, and think properly. This condition can be caused by oxygen deprivation, brain trauma, brain bleeding, umbilical cord problems, uterine rupture, placental abruption, and brain toxins.
- Brachial Plexus Injury and Erb’s Palsy. These conditions can occur when there is too much force applied to the baby’s head/neck amidst the delivery process. The force can cause nerves to be torn in the shoulder area, resulting in arm weakness or paralysis. It happens when a baby’s neck is stretched too much during delivery. While some cases of Erb’s Palsy are relatively minor, many babies will need to go through physical therapy or surgery if there is no improvement.
- Hydrocephalus. Excess fluid of the brain accumulates due to head trauma or oxygen deprivation. The buildup of this fluid can cause brain damage.
- Fractures. During the delivery process, a newborn may fracture their clavicle. Sometimes, there is nothing that could have been done about this injury. In other cases, however, the doctor may have had the time necessary to see a complication and request a C-section.
- Caput Succedaneum. This condition is marked by the swelling of a newborn’s scalp. It is possible that this happened because of pressure in the birth canal or when the doctor used a vacuum extraction procedure.
These are only a few of the injuries that an infant can experience during labor. The mother may also be at risk of harm if something goes wrong or if the medical team is negligent. Our birth injury attorneys have dedicated their professional lives to fighting for the rights of parents and their children. Call us today to learn how we may be able to help you too.
Learn more about What Birth Injuries Constitute a Legal Claim?
When Do I Need a Birth Injury Lawyer?
Realizing that your doctor or other staff made a huge mistake before, during or after your delivery can be terrifying. Parents want what is best for their children from the start, and look to doctors for guidance on keeping their baby healthy as it develops in the womb and becomes ready to enter the world.
If your baby suffered a birth injury due to any of the following reasons, please contact our birth injury team of lawyers immediately:
- Failure to diagnose problems and offer proper treatment prior to delivery.
- Failure to diagnose and create a plan for a high-risk delivery.
- Failure to identify and respond urgently to umbilical cord issues.
- Failure to admit the mother into an emergency C-section when needed.
- Failure to notice and properly address heart issues in the baby.
- Failure to administer necessary medications to address complications.
- Failure to administer the correct dosage or type of medication.
- Failure to respond with urgency to the fetus in distress or lacking oxygen.
- Failure to use delivery instruments in the appropriate way.
What’s the difference between a birth injury and a birth defect?
- A birth defect happens during the development of your baby. A birth injury happens during childbirth or shortly after.
- A birth defect can be caused by natural occurrences or by negligence of someone else. A birth injury is almost always caused by negligence or carelessness of medical personnel.
Getting Help – Call for a Free Consultation
If you are facing hardships due to a birth-related injury, allow us to manage the legal aspects of your case. Depending on the variables associated with the pregnancy or delivery, you may have reason to file a lawsuit for compensation.
There is nothing that can atone for the injuries sustained by baby or mother, but a knowledgeable birth injury lawyer may be able to obtain a financial settlement that will assist with future costs, cover related medical expenses and attempt to compensate for the injury sustained.
If your child suffered from a birth injury, you should not be stuck with the medical bills, physical therapy, and costs associated with the lifelong complications that this type of medical malpractice caused. We believe that you should get compensation for these and other costs.
Failure to consult with a lawyer in a birth injury case is one you might find yourself regretting. Call us today for a free consultation 888.845.9696 to learn your legal options.