Our Experienced Medical Malpractice Lawyers Explain Some Important Things You Need to Know If You Suspect Your Baby Was Injured During Pregnancy, Labor or Delivery
The birth of a child is usually a joyous and celebratory time for a family. Unfortunately, however, there are times when a child suffers a birth injury during pregnancy, labor or delivery as a result of medical malpractice. If you suspect that your child was injured by medical malpractice, here are some important things you should know.
What is a Birth Injury?
A birth injury is an injury to a baby during pregnancy, delivery, or just after delivery. There are different types of injuries that can occur, including:
- Cerebral Palsy, a brain disorder which interferes with motor function, and causes muscle and physical disabilities;
- Brachial Plexus Injury, an injury to the upper arm that occurs during the birthing process;
- Erb’s Palsy, a condition similar to a Brachial Plexus injury, with upper arm nerve damage that can lead to a total paralysis of the affected arm;
- Klumpke’s Palsy, a condition similar to Brachial Plexus injury, with lower arm nerve damage that may lead to total paralysis of the arm, and leaving the hand in a claw-like shape;
- Shoulder Dystocia, a condition that occurs when the infant’s head and shoulders are trapped behind the mother’s pelvic bone, leading to multiple severe injuries for both the mother and child;
- Meningitis, an infection that if left untreated, can cause serious and permanent effects on a child;
- Bone fractures;
- Infant strokes;
- Cognitive Developmental Disabilities.
How Do You Prove a Birth Injury Medical Malpractice Case?
To win a birth injury medical malpractice case you must show that the doctor departed from accepted standards of medical care, and that as a result, your child was injured. This must be done with the help of a competent medical expert that has reviewed the medical evidence. While there are many different types of birth injury claims, there are two general categories: brain injury claims and muscle/bone related injuries.
Claims involving brain damaged infants almost always have one common element: a lack of oxygen to a baby’s brain during labor or delivery. A baby can be deprived of oxygen for many reasons, although it happens most commonly because of:
- Umbilical cord issues, a cord wrapped around an infant’s neck, or cut too soon, which can lead to oxygen deprivation;
- Birth canal problems, an infant stuck in the birth canal resulting in suffocation, as well as other possible physical injuries;
- Blocked airway, due to mucus or some other factor blocking the baby’s oxygen intake.
Some other types of medical malpractice that can cause a baby to suffer brain damage, include:
- Misuse of birthing tools;
- Failure to administer a C-section in a timely manner;
- Failure to detect maternal infections.
In addition to brain damage claims, there are other types of birth injuries that can occur. These include fractures, stroke and various shoulder and nerve injuries that can result in significant harm to the baby.
What are Common Signs of a Birth Injury?
It is important to identify and treat a birth injury as quickly as possible. Some signs and symptoms that are consistent with birth injury include:
- Non-stop crying;
- Difficulty sleeping;
- Fussiness, for no reason;
- Missed or late milestones (crawling, walking, talking, grasping objects)
- Light sensitivity;
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If you have any questions concerning a birth injury to your child, contact our experienced birth injury attorneys for more information by email or by calling (800) 762-9300. You can also get started by simply filling out one of our case intake forms and we will have one of our attorneys get right back to you.
You Might Also Be Interested In:
- Was Your Baby’s Shoulder Injury Caused by Medical Malpractice During Delivery?
- Was Your Child’s Erb’s Palsy Caused By Malpractice?