Birth Injury Attorney – For every family, the birth of a child should be a joyful and festive moment. Parents and family members are fully prepared for the safe and healthy arrival of the new baby. Health care providers are mandated to provide adequate care during pregnancy, birth, and aftercare; However, any medical error during this period can have devastating consequences for the family. You have the right to justice and compensation for any physical or emotional harm your family has suffered before, during and after the birth of your child. You and your family also have the right to have a compassionate team ready to devote their expertise and financial resources to evaluating your case and referring you to the hospitals and doctors in charge.
Mothers trust their obstetricians and gynecologists to care for them and their babies during pregnancy, labor and delivery. When one of these doctors neglects to perform their professional duties, it can cause serious birth defects.
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Hypoxia, also known as asphyxia, is a condition in which the body and brain are not getting enough oxygen. Without oxygen, cells in the body begin to fail and then die. Asphyxia can occur before, during or after birth, which can have long-term effects on the baby and its family.
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Babies who survive asphyxiation during pregnancy, labor or delivery are at increased risk for mental health problems. Even a slight lack of oxygen can cause a delay in the development of the newborn and damage the brain.
Trauma to the head and brain during or after birth or trauma to the baby’s spinal cord can cause temporary or permanent brain damage.
Traumatic and acquired head or brain injuries can affect a child’s brain development and lead to long-term physical or cognitive problems. Doctors can diagnose some brain injuries immediately, while others may take months or years to diagnose. Either way, parents can file medical malpractice lawsuits against the guilty doctors or medical centers. Contact an attorney the moment a doctor diagnoses your child with a brain injury or similar condition.
Cerebral palsy (CP) is a lifelong neurological condition that affects the parts of the brain that control motor skills and coordination. It is the result of abnormal brain development or brain damage that occurs before the age of five. Congenital cerebral palsy, which affects the majority (85%-90%) of CP patients, is related to brain damage that occurred before or during birth, according to the CDC.
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Congenital cerebral palsy is often associated with a lack of oxygen to the baby’s brain during labor and delivery, infections in the baby or mother, high blood pressure during delivery, problems with the placenta, or blunt trauma.
It can take doctors months or years to identify and diagnose CP in a child, and there is still no cure. In some cases, the birth injuries that cause CP could have been prevented with proper medical care.
Kernicterus is a rare and preventable form of brain injury. It can occur in children with severe jaundice: a condition in which the skin and whites of the eyes turn yellow due to high levels of bilirubin in the bloodstream.
Bilirubin is a bile chemical that is normally removed from the body by the liver. During pregnancy, the mother’s liver fulfills this function, but after birth, the baby’s liver takes over. Some children’s livers may not be developed enough to remove bilirubin, and when the chemical builds up in the bloodstream, the skin and eyes can turn yellow. Jaundice is quite common in infants; About 60% of all babies have some level of jaundice, but risk factors for more severe jaundice include:
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Most hospitals are set up to screen babies for jaundice before it occurs, because properly treating the build-up of bilirubin can cause it to enter the baby’s brain tissue and damage it. This type of brain damage is called kernicterus and can cause hearing loss, vision problems, teeth development problems, athetoid cerebral palsy, and in some cases mental disabilities.
Newborn babies can have broken bones at birth or shortly after birth if the doctor does not use proper and adequate care during delivery. Improper birthing techniques, inadequate response to emergencies or the incorrect use of tools such as forceps and vacuum cleaners can cause fractures in newborns – especially in the face, shoulders, wrists or hands – and these fractures can lead to nerve damage. with temporary or permanent paralysis.
Newborn bones are more fragile than adult bones, and unfortunately, the Birth Injury Guide states that birth fractures are one of the most common types of birth injuries. Fractures at birth can be minor or severe and often continue along with nerve damage.
The brachial plexus is a network of nerves between the arm and neck that is responsible for transmitting signals between the brain, arms, shoulders and hands. When the brachial plexus is torn, stretched, or compressed—which can happen during a difficult birth—interruption of nerve signals can lead to temporary or permanent paralysis in those areas.
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Congenital facial palsy is a condition of temporary or permanent damage to a child’s facial nerves during birth. This type of nerve damage can lead to facial paralysis, often in the lower half of the face. Symptoms may not be obvious right away, but if the child has an asymmetric facial expression, movement on one side of the face, or one eyelid does not close, they may be affecting the facial nerve. Congenital facial paralysis can improve on its own, but in some cases it can cause permanent damage or require surgery.
Congenital facial paralysis is caused by excessive pressure or force on the facial nerves and is often caused by:
Challenging analysis sometimes causes severe damage to the newborn’s spinal cord. As the body’s central communication system, the spinal cord is one of the most important parts of the body to protect, and damage at birth can result in lifelong physical or mental disabilities.
Symptoms vary depending on the type and severity of the spinal cord injury. If you believe your child suffered a spinal cord injury during childbirth, it is worth speaking with an experienced birth injury attorney to determine possible parties at fault and seek compensation, surgery, therapy or other treatment.
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Infants can also suffer physical injuries that are not related to broken bones, brain damage, or nerve damage. In some cases, these types of injuries can cause complications.
Caput succedaneum is a condition in which the baby’s scalp swells due to pressure during labor and delivery. This is usually caused by:
Generally, this condition is not serious and will resolve on its own, but if not properly controlled, it can lead to more serious complications such as jaundice and carnicterus.
A cephalhematoma occurs when a blood vessel bursts and blood collects between the skin and the baby’s skull, forming a round lump on the head. It occurs in 1-2% of all births and although it is sometimes caused by the natural processes of birth, it can also be caused by incorrect use of forceps or negative pressure during a difficult birth.
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Although a cephalhematoma is considered a minor injury that should go away on its own, it can be a sign of a more serious injury, such as an infection or skull fracture, and can lead to further complications or injury.
A subconjunctival hemorrhage (also known as a retinal hemorrhage) occurs when small blood vessels around and under the eye burst. It can happen at any age, but is more common in babies born with difficult births. The indicated symptom is a red spot on the white of the eye.
Like cephalhematomas, subconjunctival hemorrhage is sometimes caused by natural pressure on the birth canal, but the risk of injury increases when forceps or vacuum are used. In most cases, this type of injury resolves on its own, but if left untreated, it can lead to future vision problems.
In the worst cases, neglect of medical care during pregnancy, labor and delivery can lead to the wrongful death of the child.
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The team at Murphy Falcon and Murphy’s wrongful death attorneys is here to help you through these difficult times. We can take the legal burden off your shoulders by taking care of all the details, from discussing your options with you to filing a claim and compensation. If you are interested in more information, please contact our Baltimore office.
Despite inevitable causes, many birth injuries are the result of medical malpractice. Parents are often misinformed about the cause of their child’s condition and may be misled into believing that a preventable error is inevitable.
A type of obstructed labor that occurs when the shoulders have difficulty moving after the head has been delivered. If doctors do not respond to dystocia correctly, the umbilical cord can become compressed and endanger the life of the newborn. Complications from dystocia can include Klumpke’s palsy, Erb’s palsy, and cerebral palsy.