What Birth Injuries Are Commonly Caused by Malpractice?
You’ve been waiting to welcome your newborn baby into the world with joy and celebration. Sadly, your happiness is cut short when you realize that a few things went wrong at birth due to medical malpractice. It is natural to wonder what to do when a doctor diagnoses your baby with cerebral palsy, seizures, mental retardation, spasticity, or other physical or mental inabilities.
From a legal perspective, it can be challenging to identify physical and mental injuries sustained at birth due to negligence. However, experienced Christian personal injury and family law lawyers in Tulsa can investigate if your child is a victim of medical malpractice that led to birth injuries. If that’s the case, they can help you pursue total compensation for the damages.
Is It a Birth Injury or Birth Defect?
A birth injury is any injury the baby sustains immediately before, during, or after childbirth. Many babies get minor injuries that don’t require treatment because they often resolve on their own in days or weeks. However, some birth injuries are more severe, resulting in a disability for the rest of your baby’s life.
Birth defects happen while the baby is still developing in the womb. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report that birth defects typically develop within the first three months of pregnancy. Risk factors include family medical history, drug use, and untreated infections. Before taking legal action, it helps to determine whether yours is a case of birth injury or defects.
What Are the Causes of Birth Injuries?
There are various causes of birth injuries, some of which are natural, for example:
The mother may exhibit various risk factors for birth injuries like:
- Difficult labor due to an awkwardly positioned fetus or a cervix that doesn’t expand normally
- The mother’s pelvis may be the wrong shape or size for a safe delivery
- Prolonged labor
- A big baby that weighs more than 8 pounds and 13 ounces
- Babies born prematurely before 37 weeks
- Abnormal fetal position at birth
Medical Negligence or Malpractice
In other cases, a birth injury happens because of a medical mistake. A doctor or other healthcare provider fails to follow the accepted standards of care, leading to injuries. Examples include:
- The doctor makes mistakes like not monitoring or detecting problems with the fetal heart rate or misinterpreting ultrasound results.
- Incorrectly using a medical device or instrument, leading to nerve damage or skull fracture
- Oxygen deprivation to the baby during labor and delivery, causing brain damage
Medical negligence also entails improper management of a complicated pregnancy or delivery. Christian birth injury attorneys in Tulsa could help you prove your claims if medical negligence caused your baby’s birth injuries. They’ll also help you pursue compensation for the damages and pain and suffering.
What Are the Common Birth Injuries Due to Medical Malpractice?
Severe birth injuries are possible due to medical malpractice. If your baby sustains the following conditions because of a doctor’s negligence, consult Christian personal injury and family law lawyers in Tulsa immediately.
In every 1,000 children born, 2-3 may have cerebral palsy, which presents as weak muscles, lack of motor skill development, and muscle spasms. The condition occurs due to brain damage during birth caused by medical negligence, for example, not monitoring the laboring mother adequately.
Lack of proper monitoring causes fetal distress, leading to extreme hypoxic episodes and, later, cerebral palsy. The condition often requires lifetime therapy and can lead to speech problems, learning disabilities, and hearing and vision impairments.
If a doctor doesn’t monitor an infant during birth or lets it remain in the birth canal for too long, the baby may suffer oxygen deprivation. It can lead to cerebral palsy or chronic seizures. Physical problems and intellectual disabilities can result from even the slightest episode of oxygen deprivation.
Facial paralysis happens if the baby’s face is exposed to high-pressure levels during delivery. If you realize that your baby cannot close an eye or lacks facial movement on one side of the face, it could indicate facial paralysis. Mild injuries clear up in a few weeks, but extensive damage can paralyze one side of the face.
Medications can be another common cause of birth injuries. For example, doctors often prescribe Pitocin to many women to induce labor. Sadly, the medication can cause extreme contractions that the mother may be unable to manage.
In turn, the contractions put more stress on the uterus muscles, increasing the risk of rupture and causing harm to the baby and mother. In severe complications, seizures, brain damage, and death have occurred.
Doctors should be careful about the medications they prescribe to pregnant mothers and monitor potential complications. If you believe a doctor subscribed medication that contributed to your baby’s birth injuries, let Tulsa Christian birth injury attorneys evaluate your case and advise on your legal options.
Bone fractures to the baby can happen during a complicated delivery, particularly a fractured collarbone. Most of these fractures heal progressively without any intervention. In severe cases, the baby may require immobilization to treat the fracture.
Spinal Cord Injuries
Spine injuries are the most common type of birth injuries. They mainly happen when a doctor forcefully uses forceps in assisted delivery, causing nerve or cord damage. Potential complications include neurological problems and paralysis.
What Compensation is Available for Birth Injuries Caused by Medical Negligence?
Various compensation types might be available for your claim if your child was injured at birth due to medical negligence. However, remember that every case is different, and the total compensation due will depend on the facts presented in each case:
- Coverage of present and future medical expenses related to birth injuries and disabilities
- Compensation for any required in-home care or medical devices
- Pain and suffering damages
- Recovery of lost wages if you are unable to work to care for your child
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Potential punitive damages against a negligent medical provider
Calculating compensation is complicated, especially when determining how the injuries will affect the child for the rest of their life. Skilled Christian birth injury lawyers in Tulsa can work with medical and economic experts to properly calculate the expenses.
Compassionate Legal Representatives Fighting for Your Baby’s Rights
It can be stressful and emotionally draining to realize that your child has suffered a birth injury because of medical negligence. Unfortunately, this is an all-too-common scenario in the United States. The best part is that you don’t have to be quiet if your child sustains birth injuries. Tulsa Christian birth injury lawyers can hold the negligent medical care provider liable.
Our lawyers are passionate about helping you pursue a compensation claim promptly. We can represent you in court proceedings and insurance negotiations as we update you at every step of the way. Medical negligence is unforgivable, and we want to help you fight for the best possible outcome. Contact us to get a FREE case assessment.