Bringing a child into the world is an exciting and incredible experience. Even when everything goes right, it can be somewhat frightening to think about the responsibility of caring for a new baby. It is unknown territory for first-time parents and can provide challenges for parents who already have children.
If anything goes wrong during labor or delivery, birth injuries may occur and mother or baby may be left facing an uncertain future. Spohrer Dodd is here to provide legal counsel and support if your family has been affected by a preventable birth injury. We know how to identify malpractice and negligence by obstetricians, nurses, hospitals, birthing centers, midwives, and other healthcare professionals and facilities involved in the birth of a child.
Put our experience in your corner. Call (904) 637-7721 for a free, confidential review of your birth injury claim.
What Is a Birth Injury?
A birth injury may be defined as a type of physical injury that occurs during labor or delivery, or shortly after birth. Some birth injuries occur through no fault of an attending doctor or nurse. Others, however, occur as a result of a medical professional’s failure to provide standard care. These preventable birth injuries are the ones that provide grounds for medical malpractice lawsuits, which allow a family to pursue compensation for an injured child’s medical care, ongoing treatment, and more.
Our birth injury attorneys take on cases in Jacksonville, Florida, and the entire U.S. involving:
- Cerebral palsy
- Erb’s palsy
- Brachial plexus injuries
- Klumpke’s palsy
- Developmental delays
- Hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy (HIE)
- C-section errors
- Delayed C-section
- Shoulder dystocia
- Failure to respond to fetal distress
- Failure to diagnose maternal diabetes
- Failure to diagnose preeclampsia
Types of Medical Malpractice That Could Lead to Birth Injuries
Delivering a healthy baby can be hard on its own, even with years of education and hands-on training. If a medical practitioner does not meet any outlying factors or sudden complications with the utmost care, attention, and sense of urgency, the result can be devastating to the physical and/or mental health of the mother or child. For this reason, many birth injuries that result in severe harm to the infant or mother are caused by medical malpractice.
Common medical malpractices that can cause a dangerous birth injury include:
- Allowing labor to persist for too long
- Failing to identify a breech birth
- Failing to address oxygen deprivation of the infant
- Improperly delivering a cesarean section
- Insufficiently monitoring the child or mother during labor
- Mishandling shoulder dystocia
- Misusing medical equipment
What Birth Injuries Arise from Medical Malpractice?
There are myriad birth injuries that can result from medical malpractice. Cerebral palsy and facial paralysis are common when a medical practitioner puts too much pressure on an area of nerves or improperly uses medical tools, such as forceps or vacuum extractors. Another example is Erb’s palsy arising from the improper handling of shoulder dystocia, which is when the infant gets lodged behind the mother’s pubic bone. The nerves that move the shoulder, arm, and hand— the brachial plexus— can be damaged if an infant suffers from shoulder dystocia, and the medical practitioner fails to remedy it safely and effectively.
Another common birth injury that can arise from medical malpractice is epilepsy due to oxygen deprivation. If an infant is deprived of oxygen for even a short amount of time, the result may be a physical or intellectual disability, shock, coma, or even death. Oxygen deprivation and asphyxia usually occur when the medical staff does not sufficiently monitor the infant during and after birth or leaves the baby in the birth canal for too long.
Other Causes of Birth Injuries
Faulty medical tools and supplies may also lead to a preventable birth injury, as some medical practitioners might employ these devices when delivering an infant.
While medical tools are generally safe, they can be faulty, just like any other product. Forceps, vacuum extractors, and Pitocin have been the cause of birth injuries many times before. For instance, forceps and vacuum extractors can be too strong, leading to too much pressure being placed on part of the infant’s body. This could lead to nerve damage or lacerations. Similarly, Pitocin carries dangerous side effects, such as fetal distress, which is why it is considered a last resort by most doctors.
How Can You Hold the Negligent Party Responsible?
As you can see, a birth injury can happen easily, but that doesn’t mean it should.
The compensation for a birth injury lawsuit could cover:
- Medical expenses
- Lost wages
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of quality of life
- Mental anguish
Compensation is unique to each case, just as the contributing factors are unique to each birth injury. Do not feel deterred if the birth injury you or your child suffered is not mentioned above. We encourage you to contact our attorneys at Spohrer Dodd to discuss the specifics of your case and the birth injury suffered. It is our passion to represent the wrongfully injured, and we want to use our legal experience and resources to help you cut through the legal red tape and fight for your rights!
Get Started today with a free consultation
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.
To arrange your free birth injury case evaluation, call (904) 637-7721 or contact us online. We are standing by to see how we can help you.