Birth Injury :: Birth Injury, Cerebral Palsy, Brain Damage, Erb's Palsy and Eminent Domain Law Practice in Puerto Rico
A birth injury is usually defined as an injury or condition that results from complications during labor or delivery. It is estimated that between 27 babies out of 1,000 born will suffer some sort of birth injury.
Birth injuries can be caused by circumstances surrounding the birth, such as the babys size or position during labor and delivery. Babies who are larger than 8 pounds 13 ounces are at risk for birth injury, as are babies with an abnormal birthing position, such as breech (buttocks first). Other natural conditions that may cause birth injury are prematurity, the size and shape of the mothers pelvis and prolonged or difficult labor. Twisted umbilical chords may cut off the oxygen supply, putting the baby at risk for birth injury.
Birth injuries may also be caused by medical malpractice. A doctors failure to provide proper pre-natal care could result in a difficult labor or delivery. Medication prescribed by a physician during pregnancy may be harmful to the fetus, and the use of forceps or vacuum extraction during delivery may cause several different birth injuries.A doctors delay in ordering a C-section may also lead to birth injury.
Common birth injuries that occur include: swelling of the babys skull, bleeding underneath the babys cranial burns, bruising on the head or face, subconjunctival hemorrhage (bursting of blood vessels in the eyes), facial paralysis, brachial palsy (inability to flex and rotate the shoulder and arm), and fractures of the clavicle or collarbone. For the most part, these common birth injuries heal on their own within a few weeks or can be fixed with immobilization, physical therapy or, in extreme cases, surgery.
Cerebral palsy, a group of disorders caused by damage to the brain before, during or shortly after birth, is one of the more severe birth injuries. Resulting in impaired muscle control and neurological complications that do not worsen or improve over time. Each year, 8,000 infants are diagnosed with cerebral palsy.
It may be difficult to determine whether a birth injury is the result of natural causes or if it is caused by medical error. A personal injury lawyer can help determine the cause of birth injury and seek compensation from faulty physicians.
Even though most women give birth in modern hospitals surrounded by medical professionals, seven of every 1,000 births result in birth injuries. Newborns are fragile and susceptible to damage in many different ways. Their bones are very soft, their organs are newly developed, they have weaker immune systems, and their small size means that infections, diseases, and many of the other things that harm adults can harm babies much more severely. Injuries sustained at the critical time of birth can have devastating permanent effects.
Sadly, these injuries are often the result of a doctor or other medical professional’s negligence. If you feel your baby has been harmed as a result of medical malpractice, you may be entitled to seek compensation for your losses and suffering . Please contact us today to speak with an experienced and caring medical malpractice lawyer free of charge.
Birth Injuries : Risks
Medical malpractice is most likely to occur in the case of a difficult birth. Some of the common conditions that increase the risk of doctor mistakes and birth injuries are:
- Large baby
- Premature baby
- Prolonged labor
- Difficult labor
- Breech delivery
Doctors and other healthcare professionals, however, are trained to handle challenging situations. When they act negligently – whether intentional or not – the consequences can be severe and they can be held liable as a result.
Medical Malpractice and Birth Injuries
Because these injuries occur at a critical time in a child’s development, birth injuries can have any number of devastating and permanent effects. For this reason, doctors should exercise extreme caution in the delivery room. Unfortunately, even the slightest mistake could result in the following:
- Cerebral palsy
- Erb's palsy
- Full, or partial paralysis
- Nerve damage
- Bone fractures and breaks
- Brain damage
Many of these conditions are irreversible, requiring long-term medical treatment. If your child suffers from any of these or other conditions that you feel may be the result of medical malpractice, you need to ensure your legal rights are protected. You may be eligible to recover compensation for medical expenses, mental anguish, and more.