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After nurturing a baby through nine months of pregnancy, holding that baby in your arms is a wondrous experience and one you should cherish. If mother or baby is injured in the process, however, the experience can be traumatizing and last for weeks, years, or an entire lifetime. In the worst scenario imaginable, the mother or infant loses their life and your dream turns into a nightmare.
If your newborn was injured during birth, they may have suffered either brain or nervous system injuries. Brain injuries – such as those resulting from oxygen deprivation or bleeding between the skull and the brain – can lead to physical and cognitive impairments, and sometimes death. Nervous system injuries can lead to arm immobility or facial paralysis. Minor injuries might heal, but more severe injuries can require medical procedures and a lifetime of care.
If the mother was injured during childbirth, issues may have arisen during pregnancy – like preeclampsia or gestational diabetes – that were not properly addressed. Without adequate care, she may suffer from conditions such as a ruptured uterus, infection, pelvic trauma, or massive blood loss. The toll this takes – both physically and emotionally – can leave permanent scars.
During birth, medical professionals may delay or opt not to perform a C-section, thus endangering the mother and baby. While unthinkable, mismanaged labor and delivery or improper monitoring can cause the infant to suffer broken bones, fluid buildup in the brain, dislocated shoulders, and even spinal injuries.
Birth injuries are usually avoidable, and are often the result of medical negligence. Those who are responsible for an infant’s or mother’s injuries should be held accountable. A negligence lawsuit can potentially name a variety of people and entities, including the obstetrician, nurse, midwife, physician assistant, pharmacist, and hospital. Bringing a birth injury lawsuit can provide you with the compensation you deserve for you or your baby’s injuries.
Our birth injury attorneys tap into the knowledge of your healthcare team and our experts, and then estimate the costs associated with your injuries. These costs can include medical treatment – both now and in the future – lost earnings, long-term care, and medical equipment and supplies. In addition, we also seek compensation for reduced quality of life and pain and suffering.
It is critical that you contact an experienced birth injury lawyer soon after the injury occurs or as soon after the discovery of the injury. The earlier you approach your attorney, the more comfortable you can rest knowing that your case is not lost for being untimely.
- Failure to diagnose genetic risks or diseases
- Improper prescriptions that are given to the pregnant mother
- Malpractice during in utero medical procedures
During delivery, a lot can go wrong if a medical professional does not do his or her job.
Improper use of medical procedures can result in:
- broken bones
- oxygen deprivation
- spinal injuries
- fetal stress
- Cerebral palsy: caused by brain damage sometime during childbirth
- Detached placenta: detachment of the placenta from the uterine wall
- Infant Anoxia/Hypoxia: loss of oxygen to the brain during childbirth
- Bell’s Palsy: baby’s facial nerve is damaged during labor or birth
- Klumpke’s Palsy: effects the lower 2 of 5 nerves in the brachial plexus
- Pediatric Hydrocephalus: a buildup of fluid in the brain, causes damaging pressure
- Brachial Plexus: injury to the network of nerves that connects the spinal cord to the baby’s arms and hands
- Brain bleeding: bleeding of the soft tissue of the brain into the skull and brain area
- Bone injuries: bruises to bones or broken or fractured bones
- Cephalohematoma: accumulation of blood beneath the baby’s periosteum (the protective membrane that covers an infant’s skull)
- Shoulder dystocia: the infant’s shoulders become lodged in the mother’s pelvic area
- A fractured skull, which parents can detect by noticing lumps or dents in the child’s head
- Erratic eye movements, which can be a sign of seizures or other brain problems
- Severe breathing problems, which can mean that the child was not able to get enough oxygen right after being born
- A subconjunctival hemorrhage in the baby’s eye, which can be a sign that the pressure on the baby’s skull during the delivery was so severe that it could have also created neurological damage in addition to bursting blood vessels in the newborn’s eye
However, many neurological birth injuries do not present any symptoms for several months. The symptoms that slowly begin to emerge are developmental delays, where the child is unable to perform the tasks that doctor would expect of someone their age. This can be a symptom that they are struggling to overcome a birth injury that has caused neurological damage.
Children who have suffered physical birth injuries have symptoms that are more pronounced. In many cases, the birth injury is the symptom. These cases include:
- Fractured collarbones
- Broken bones
- Dislocated shoulders
- Asymmetrical facial movements, which indicate facial paralysis and potentially even nerve damage
- Other limb paralysis, usually in the arms
- Chronic pain, where the child cries uncontrollably while arching its back
- Eating problems, like an inability to swallow, nausea, lack of appetite, and vomiting
- medical bills
- future medical expenses
- pain and suffering
- lost earning capacity
- loss of consortium
This financial compensation can help your family to recover after the devastating effects of a birth injury caused by medical malpractice. The responsible party should have to pay, not you.