What is Birth Injury?
Any damage endured by a newborn during the birth process is known as a birth injury. Various factors can lead to this kind of injury. The injury can be physical, brain injury, nerve injury, or any medical condition caused by issues of pregnancy, labor, delivery, or the time shortly after a child is born. Sometimes, these injuries are caused by preventable mistakes made by doctors, nurses, midwives, and other medical professionals, and those mistakes cause devastating birth injuries. An untreated maternal illness such as infections or preeclampsia can cause serious harm to a baby if it remains untreated or is not diagnosed on time. A baby having untreated jaundice can result in damage to the child. In that case, it can also be considered a birth injury. Any physical trauma during childbirth can also be the primary cause of birth injuries.
Types of Birth Injuries:
A child may suffer a lifetime disability because of a birth injury. The most common birth injuries include:
- Collar bone fractures:
Collar bone fracture, also known as clavicle fracture, occurs when the baby’s shoulders are caught behind the mother’s pubic bone during delivery. It usually occurs when a doctor, nurse, or midwife misconducts the emergency. For example, forceps may be improperly used to force out the baby.
- Brachial Plexus Injuries:
A bunch of nerves located at the base of the neck is known as the brachial plexus. These nerves control the movement and sensation within the shoulders, arms, and hands. The brachial plexus may suffer from damage when a clavicle fracture occurs. Moreover, the situation is not handled adequately during delivery. It may also result in medical conditions such as Erb’s palsy or Klumpke’s palsy.
- Spinal Cord Injuries:
The spinal cord consists of nerves that extend from the skull base to the lower back. A baby’s spinal cord can get compressed during delivery. In that case, the child may suffer neurological damage or paralysis.
- Perinatal Asphyxia :
Perinatal asphyxia can be caused due to an infection, umbilical cord problems, or excessive bleeding. If oxygen flow to the child’s brain is disrupted, then a child may suffer permanent brain, lung, and kidney damage.
- Cerebral Palsy :
It is an untreatable condition that includes many deficiencies, including loss of speech, vision, hearing, muscle control, and coordination. During a child’s birth, any brain trauma or loss of oxygen can cause cerebral palsy. If a child has cerebral palsy, then parents must know who is at fault in a cerebral palsy lawsuit, the stages of a cerebral palsy lawsuit, and the time limits for a cerebral palsy lawsuit.
- Intracranial Hemorrhage:
A vessel rupture inside a child’s brain, leading to excessive bleeding, can be caused due to insufficiency of blood or oxygen in the bloodstream. The child may also suffer permanent brain damage or other complications like heightened bilirubin levels (hyperbilirubinemia) due to the bleeding. It can also lead to jaundice.
- Extracranial Injuries:
Misuse of forceps or vacuum extractors during delivery by medical professionals can cause a fracture to the child’s skull. It may also result in excessive bleeding between the brain and the skull. An extracranial injury can also disfigure a child.
Causes of Birth Injuries:
About 3 out of every 100 births involve some severe kind of birth injury. Pregnancy-induced hypertension, prescribing a medication that can have dangerous side effects on the mother, delaying the performance of a C-section, premature delivery complications, misusing medical pieces of equipment like forceps or vacuum extractor, miscommunication between doctors and nurses, and taking on forsake mother’s or baby’s condition immediately after birth are the medical errors that can cause serious birth injuries to a child.
Why A Birth Injury Lawyer?
A birth injury lawyer can offer the best chances in terms of obtaining justice and compensation for a child suffering from a birth injury. The main goal of the attorney is to win the case and facilitate the legal process for the child and their family. A child suffering a birth injury requires expensive medical treatment, often going on for months, years, or even a lifetime. The attorney strives to help the family receive the highest possible compensation to reduce the family’s financial burden. Financial compensation from a birth injury lawsuit can help pay for the adaptable equipment such as wheelchairs, home care, medications, medical expenses, and different types of therapy.
Many birth injury attorneys have years of experience, so they know how to make strong claims and track the maximum amount of compensation you have at your disposal. They work with your family to ensure that healthcare professionals who have shown medical malpractice are held accountable. Experienced birth injury attorneys know how to deal with cases that include many preventable birth injuries, such as cervical dystonia, cesarean section injuries, infantile torticollis, Klumpke’s palsy, vacuum extraction injuries, maternal infections, neonatal jaundice, brain damage, spinal cord injuries, meconium aspiration syndrome (MAS), Erb’s palsy, and cerebral palsy. However, every case is different; most birth injury attorneys take the following steps to get the most money in no time.
Step 1: The attorney will investigate the facts presented to determine if a family has a legitimate claim.
Step 2: If the attorney decides to take the case, the defendant (the doctor who delivered the baby) will be sued.
Step 3: The lawyer and the defendant’s attorney collect evidence and information to examine and prove their side of the case.
Step 4: Each party will present their evidence to reach a fair solution and avoid trial.
Step 5: The lawyer proves that the injury to the child was avoidable. The defendant has to be content with a birth injury to not go to court.
Step 6: Sometimes, an agreement is reached during the judicial process. However, if this does not happen, a judge will decide who wins the case.
A birth injury attorney will work with the family until the case is resolved. Sometimes it can take a few months to complete a birth injury lawsuit. However, some cases can last for several years. Many birth injury attorneys recommend settling the case out of court so that your customers can get monetary compensation faster than they would during a trial period. The process takes longer than the case and will not lead to compensation if the judge decides to favor the accused. Are you wondering whether you require a birth injury lawyer? Contact Pittsburgh Injury Lawyers for a free consultation!