Every parent wants the experience of a new baby to be as exciting and enjoyable as possible. While uncomfortable moments come with the territory, when all is said and done most expect to go home with a healthy baby. Unfortunately, this is not always the case. Even when it appears that the pregnancy was normal, there are things that can go wrong during labor and delivery, and it is the job of doctors, nurses and other hospital staff to stay alert and respond appropriately to prevent injuries and limit any harmful effects if possible. When they are unable to do this, it is important that parents look closely at the situation to determine whether negligent medical practices may have played a role in their child's injury.
Common Birth Injuries
There are several situations that may result in a child being injured during the birthing process, and these injuries can affect the child to varying degrees throughout childhood and sometimes for the rest of their life. Some common birth-related injuries include:
- Skull Injuries
- Spinal Cord Injuries
- Oxygen Deficiency causing cerebral palsy or other brain injuries
- Various Nerve Injuries resulting in temporary or permanent paralysis
The experience of labor and delivery can seem unpredictable to parents. However, there are several characteristics and warning signs that doctors should be able to perceive to identify when risks are present and when special intervention may be necessary, such as performing a C-section. With today's monitoring equipment, many trained medical professionals are able to determine whether a baby is expected to be much larger than average or if there are problems such as tangling of an umbilical cord, or poor positioning of the fetus that requires extra attention in order to prevent injury. Additionally, in some cases, the misuse of forceps or vacuums can cause injuries to the head and brain ranging from scrapes to bleeding that can cause brain injuries.
Throughout the labor experience, both the mother and child should be monitored closely, and appropriate action should be taken if there is any sign of fetal distress. Failing to respond to fetal distress can quickly result in both temporary and permanent disabilities to your child, and a much greater financial impact on your family. If your baby was injured during the birth process, it is important to speak to an attorney experienced in birth injury matters to evaluate your case. Contact attorney Alan D. Bell to schedule a consultation to discuss what occurred, help determine if malpractice played a role in your child's injuries and discuss next steps to hold the responsible party accountable.