Birth Injury Lawyer Philadelphia
Our parents all told us the story of our births. They told us the first question they asked was, “does she/he have ten fingers and toes?” We all have hopes for the best, and dread for the worst. While not all birth injuries and conditions are avoidable, new parents must be aware that many birth injuries are due to preventable negligence.
Medical care for mom and unborn child not only includes taking steps for the health of the baby before it’s born, but also includes taking steps to ensure the health and welfare of mom and baby thru labor and delivery. These steps include prenatal nutrition, routine checkups and assessments for increased risk, evaluation for potential birth defects, referrals for testing and other doctors as well as closely monitored labor and proper delivery decision-making.
Unfortunately, by no fault of anyone, babies are born every day with injuries, defects and disease. Figuring out which are due to negligence is often complicated and detailed work requiring multiple medical experts and a team of experienced Personal Injury Lawyers.
Birth Defect or Birth Injury
Physicians and medical staff are human. They can make mistakes. Medical Errors occur, but when they do, the healthcare providers must be held responsible and the victims compensated for the pain, anguish and extraordinary expense related to these catastrophic birth injuries.A very simple way of explaining the difference between a birth injury and a birth defect is that a birth defect is an unavoidable disease or DNA related condition, and birth injuries are a result of avoidable medical negligence. A birth injury can include improperly monitoring the health of the baby and mom during labor, improper manipulation of the baby during labor and delivery, administering a medicine called Pitocin improperly, failing to perform emergency delivery when distress is apparent, and using devices such as forceps improperly.
The injuries from these examples, and countless others, can be catastrophic and lead to a lifetime of care and suffering. Long hours, understaffing, improper monitoring and inexperience can never be accepted or tolerated. These are all things that medical staff members should know how to avoid.
Is There Negligence?
Medical Negligence causing birth injury could be something as simple as a doctor not viewing an ultrasound or the fetal monitor correctly. A birth injury could result from something as simple as monitoring the baby’s weight or size. Often, the failure to check the position of the baby in the weeks before the due date leads to catastrophic difficulty during labor, reduced oxygen to the baby and the resulting brain damage. Many times, a baby’s position or size determines whether the delivery will be difficult. Difficult deliveries can result in brain damage, nerve palsy and death.
Philadelphia Birth Injury Lawyer
Sometimes birth injury occurs long before labor and delivery. Malnutrition, growth retardation, hypertension, and gestational diabetes take a toll on mom and baby.
Any birth injury can be devastating. However, a condition called cerebral palsy is one of the most devastating and costly preventable birth injuries. CP will vary in severity, ranging from light involuntary movements while carrying out daily activities, to complete loss of movement. Generally, CP is the result of oxygen being deprived to the area of the brain that controls both fine and gross motor skills. In others words, birth injury, according to the National \Institute of Health, first effects those areas of the brain that control movement. This oxygen deprivation can occur from the failure to properly monitor the baby’s heartrate during labor, the failure to detect and treat an infection in mom, poor position of the baby, the umbilical cord wrapped around the neck, the failure to do an emergency C-section and the improper user of equipment during delivery.
Birth injuries are often lifelong complications that require consistent medical treatment and rehabilitation. Depending upon the severity of the injuries, the financial costs associated with birth injuries can cost in the tens of millions during the lifespan of a child with a birth injury.
This content was written on behalf of Greg Prosmushkin.