Medical errors can bring lasting pain and suffering, and few are as devastating as birth injuries. When infants sustain injuries due to physician negligence, the consequences bring an even greater emotional toll. It’s important for parents to find closure when such events occur, and a birth injury attorney can help them find deserved recompense. This post will examine how.
Common doctor errors that lead to birth injuries
Birth injuries have become rarer in recent decades, but they’re still not uncommon. Some of the most common birth injuries include hypoxia (oxygen starvation of the brain), brain damage, cerebral palsy, soft-tissue injuries, facial nerve injuries, skull fractures, head trauma, and many more.
A child or mother with health issues can complicate a birth, but doctors and hospital staff can also make mistakes. It’s easy for a hospital to write off a birth injury complaint as a congenital defect, and that’s why you should know the following five common types of medical mistakes.
Failing to monitor the fetus appropriately
It’s imperative that the doctor uses a reliable fetal heart monitor throughout pregnancy and during the birthing process, and takes immediate and appropriate action if the baby is under stress or there’s any decreased fetal movement. Inadequate fetal monitoring and delayed action may result in birth defects, such as cerebral palsy, epilepsy, and hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy.
Ignoring the baby’s weight
Doctors should closely monitor the size and weight of the baby during ultrasound visits, and appropriately determine whether to go for vaginal delivery or C-section. Avoiding these details may put both mother and baby at higher risk for complications.
Failing to identify a mother’s risk factors
It’s of utmost importance for doctors to identify any warning signs in the pregnant woman—weight issues, vaginal bleeding, high blood pressure, or unusually high or low volume of amniotic fluid—and take precautionary steps to avert any unnecessary pregnancy or delivery-related risks. Failure to timely treat mothers with risk factors may result in severe birth injuries.
Acting too slow when complication risks appear
Several unexpected complications can arrive in the labor room—such as a drop in the baby’s heart rate, decreased fetal movement, or vaginal bleeding—and the physician should be on top of things before the situation gets out of hand. Failure to provide prompt treatments can result in lifelong disabilities for the infant.
Prescribing the wrong medication or using the wrong procedures
Doctors should be responsible and expert enough to use proper tools and methods in the right way to ensure childbirth is successful and safe. For instance, forceps misuse during delivery may result in oxygen deprivation, cerebral palsy, as well as nerve or head injuries. And it’s possible for mother and child to suffer injury if the vacuum is placed improperly while the mother is having trouble. Doctors also need to be careful in prescribing the type and dosage of medicines and properly gauge if there are any risks or allergy-related concerns to the patient.
How a birth injury attorney can help
Medical malpractice cases are rarely easy, but they can be especially tough when infants are involved. Besides, the causes of birth injuries or death aren’t always obvious or straightforward. It often requires significant investigation to determine who made the mistake or misdiagnosed the situation. It’s therefore important to work with a birth injury lawyer who understands medical malpractice and birth trauma investigation and litigation.
If your (or your loved one’s) child suffered a birth injury you believe may have been caused by medical malpractice and negligence, consult a birth injury law firm right away. LegalASAP can connect you with experienced birth injury attorneys who understand the realities of your specific circumstances and fight for the compensation you deserve. They can help you collect evidence and prove medical malpractice resulted in a birth injury. Contact us today for a free review of your case.