The excitement of having a newborn added to your family should be a moment of celebration. But sometimes that celebration turns to fear and pain when your child suffers a serious birth injury. No one believes or even wants to consider that the doctor and delivery staff may perform their duties in a negligent way. Unfortunately, medical errors cause birth injuries to otherwise perfectly healthy babies more frequently than you might expect. When a newborn is injured, the lifetime expenses can be staggering.
You shouldn’t have to handle these costs alone. Contact our Philadelphia birth injury lawyers to discuss whether you have a case against your doctor or hospital. Our medical malpractice attorneys are here for you.
When is it Malpractice?
If your baby suffers from a birth defect as a result of DNA, he is not a victim of medical malpractice. But, if your baby suffers a serious injury because he is handled improperly prior to, during or after birth, you might have the basis for a birth injury lawsuit with the help of a Philadelphia lawyer.
What kind of conduct is malpractice when it comes to a newborn?
Babies are very delicate. If the mother or child experience rough handling during the delivery, they can be seriously injured. Broken bones, brachial plexus injuries leading to Erb’s Palsy, brain injuries causing Cerebral Palsy, and other serious problems can all occur if a baby is not handled properly. The mother can be harmed as well.
If a woman is having issues giving birth, she might be provided with medication to induce labor. This includes prostaglandins or Pitocin. The problem with inducing labor is that it can be very risky for the baby and the mother. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists states that induction should only be performed when it is riskier for the baby to remain inside the uterus than to be born. Unfortunately, sometimes induction is performed for the convenience of the hospital staff instead of when it is strictly necessary. A mother should only be induced when it is medically necessary. For example:
- Complications such as heart disease, preeclampsia, gestational diabetes and bleeding
- Baby in danger due to lack of oxygen or nutrients
- Amniotic sac ruptured but labor does not begin within an appropriate amount of time
- Chorioamnionitis – an infection, exists inside the uterus
- The pregnancy has lasted beyond 42 weeks and there are risks to the fetus as a result
Don’t be afraid to talk with your doctor about whether it is appropriate to induce your labor. Soon to be mothers should never be induced for the convenience of a doctor or staff who are in a rush to get home for the evening.
Risks of Pictocin
Pictocin is commonly given to mothers to induce labor. The problem is, if too much Pictocin is provided and the contractions come too close together, the baby might not get enough oxygen and go into fetal distress. This can lead to brain injury and cerebral palsy or even death for the baby. In addition, this drug can cause the mother’s blood pressure to rise to dangerous rates. Both the mother and the baby must be properly monitored and steps must be taken to protect both if something goes wrong. Studies show that Pictocin can result in low APGAR scores. This is why this medication should only be used when it is truly necessary.
Failure to Monitor
During pregnancy, it is critical that the mother and fetus receive proper attention. It is the doctor’s responsibility to perform the correct tests throughout the pregnancy, so he can make certain that the baby will be born healthy and that the mother will be safe. Some of the problems a mother and her baby might experience during pregnancy include:
- Gestational diabetes
- Cervical issues
- Problems with the placenta
- Issues with amniotic fluid
- Preterm labor
- Cardiovascular disease
If the mother or fetus develop difficulties, the doctor must respond quickly and correctly. Failure to do so can result in serious health problems for both mother and baby, even leading to death. An attorney can help a family who has gone through a birth injury in Philadelphia determine if there was negligence on the part of the hospital or doctor.
Act Quickly to Protect Your Baby’s Rights
It is common for the family to not want to take immediate action if a birth injury occurs. However, you must act within the appropriate time period in order to file a claim. You also want to make sure you will have the financial support necessary to pay for your baby’s expensive medical care, and that your baby will have the financial stability he will require throughout his life. This means seeking representation and moving forward with your case as soon as possible.
Our team of attorneys can assist you in determining whether your doctor was at fault for your baby’s birth injury in Philadelphia. Our attorneys include both a doctor and a nurse. Having a doctor and nurse on your side is crucial to understanding and interpreting medical records. We at Lowenthal & Abrams, Injury Attorneys understand the pain and fear of re-living such a tragic event. You shouldn’t have to fight alone to obtain justice for your baby.
Reach Out to a Philadelphia Birth Injury Attorney
If your new baby was hurt prior to, during or after delivery, share your story with our birth injury attorneys to find out how we may be able to help. We have won settlements in excess of $11 million for our clients whose children suffered from birth injuries. You are entitled to seek compensation for your child’s injury and our dedicated Philadelphia birth injury lawyers are ready to help you. En español