The birth of a child can seem like a miracle, but it can also be the source of unbearable heartbreak, if doctors, nurses and other medical professionals act carelessly or negligently. The failure to follow generally accepted procedures before, during or after delivery can lead to serious injury and even death.
The most common types of birth injury claims result from negligence in the delivery room, and can include:
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- The failure to properly monitor the birthmother and the fetus—This may result in an unnecessary delay in the decision to deliver the child through a Caesarean section. Such a delay can affect the flow of oxygen to the unborn child’s brain, causing serious injury.
- The improper use of forceps, suction or other devices to extract a fetus—Medical professionals may be too quick to use forceps or Kiwi suction devices, causing injury to the unborn child (such as shoulder dystocia, Erb’s palsy or brachial plexus injuries). With proper
care, a delivering physician should be able to predict a breech birth, and should take steps to minimize the risk of injury to
birthmother and child.
- Deprivation of oxygen to child or mother—A number of conditions, including the prolapse or pinching of the umbilical cord, can cut off or diminish the levels of oxygen to the unborn child or to the birth mother, leading to hypoxia or asphyxia, and potential brain damage and other medical complications.
- Medication errors—Doctors and nurses may administer inappropriate medications, may provide incorrect dosages for certain medications, or may fail to give drugs when needed.
If you or your child has suffered needless injury because of the carelessness or negligence of a medical professional, you want to make certain that the attorney you hire to protect your rights has considerable recent experience with medical malpractice claims. The rules and procedures for medical malpractice claims are constantly in flux, and the standard of care applied to medical professionals is continually being modified and adapted. If your lawyer has little or no recent experience handling a medical malpractice claim, important issues may be missed.