As birth-assisting tools, vacuums and forceps can be incredibly helpful for physicians during the labor and delivery process, allowing them to safely guide the newborn baby through the birth canal. Unfortunately, these same tools can also cause serious injuries when used improperly – and such injuries can also result in life-altering complications and conditions that continue to impact a child’s development.
At Spohrer Dodd Trial Attorneys, our birth injury attorneys in Jacksonville have over 150 years of combined experience helping families navigate the complexities of these cases. We understand how painful and overwhelming it can be to pursue a lawsuit during this difficult time, which is why our highly skilled team will take the burden off your hands and use our considerable resources to advocate for a fair outcome.
Contact our Jacksonville birth injury team today at 904-309-6500 to schedule an appointment. We serve clients in Florida and across the U.S.
Vaginal labor can be long and difficult, and whenever this is the case, there is an increased risk that the child will suffer serious brain damage or other injuries due to birth trauma. An extremely old delivery tool, forceps resemble curved set of metal tongs, which are then used to grip the baby’s head and guide them through the birth canal. Many physicians also turn to vacuum extraction as an old technique for delivery, which applies suction to the baby’s scalp with a metal or a soft cup.
Of course, newborn infants are extremely delicate, and both vacuum extractors and forceps can result in bruising, disfigurement, fractures and internal bleeding. Each tool is also prone to unique errors: While vacuums may exert less force on the infant’s nerves and skull, they are also more strongly associated with hemorrhage and internal complications. It is up to the doctor to draw from their knowledge to protect children from unnecessary risk – and those who do not live up to this care standard may be held accountable for the family’s financial, physical and emotional losses.
Not all injuries caused by forceps and vacuum extractors will be lasting and permanent. In order to have a medical malpractice case against your health care provider, you must be able to demonstrate that they violated the “standard of care” that a reasonable provider would have used in the same situation. You must also show that their failures resulted in serious injuries.
Here are a few ways that medical negligence can result in vacuum and forceps injuries:
According to one study published in Reviews in Obstetrics & Gynecology, at least 5% of deliveries in the United States involve forceps or vacuum extractors. These are also called “operative vaginal deliveries.” Use of birth-assisting tools tends to be lower in areas where doctors have better access to medical resources, as C-section procedures take significantly more time (and staff members) to safely execute.
Some of the most common injuries caused by operative vaginal deliveries:
Our Jacksonville birth injury lawyers are here to expose malpractice and help you recover financial compensation for your child’s lifelong care. Because of our expertise in this field, we are often the most referred attorneys for complex obstetrical malpractice claims. We have the resources and experience to provide competent, aggressive legal representation.