A baby’s birth is one of the most exciting events in a parent’s life. All parents want the best for their children and would do anything to keep them safe and healthy. But what if their baby has a birth injury due to a doctor or healthcare worker’s medical negligence?
This post will discuss the differences between a birth injury and a birth defect. We’ll look into what action to take to file a birth injury claim of medical malpractice and how to prove medical negligence resulted in a birth injury.
Birth Injury vs. Congenital Disability
A congenital disability is a condition that results from genetics and an issue with your child’s DNA. While a doctor may be able to detect a congenital disability through prenatal testing and screening, they cannot prevent them. Congenital disabilities are very common and include conditions such as:
- Down syndrome
- Cleft palates
- Cerebral Palsy
- Limb defects
- Heart murmurs
Congenital disabilities can result from genetics, hereditary factors, chromosomal abnormalities, or environmental causes.
A birth injury results from something that happened during the birth process. Birth injuries are generally preventable and can result in permanent, life-long damage or disability to your baby.
How Elements of Medical Malpractice Can Result in a Birth Injury
Often, congenital disabilities are not preventable and are not the fault of the pregnant person or their health care provider. Sometimes, however, a doctor’s error, series of errors, negligence, or neglect is the direct cause of a birth injury.
Some common injuries caused by medical negligence include:
- Brain damage due to loss of oxygen resulting in cerebral palsy.
- Failure to properly monitor the mother and baby’s vital signs resulting in low oxygen and fetal distress.
- Muscular or skeletal injuries due to excessive force used to pull or rotate the baby.
- Nerve damage due to improper use of extraction tools such as a vacuum or forceps.
- Failure to provide an emergency c-section when necessary, causing fetal injury.
- Incorrect medication dosage to the mother or infant.
- Early or late delivery due to miscalculation of the delivery date.
What Actions Need To Be Taken?
If a doctor’s negligence led to your baby’s birth injury, you might be entitled to compensation to help pay for medical expenses and care. Your first step should be to speak with a birth injury lawyer. To prove a birth injury claim in court, you need to show four things:
- You were under a doctor or medical provider’s care, and they had a duty to provide care for you and your baby.
- There was a clear breach in their duty of care.
- This breach of care resulted in a birth injury.
- This birth injury resulted in damages such as additional medical treatments, pain and suffering, and lost wages.
How to Prove Medical Negligence in a Birth Injury Case?
Medical negligence is a complicated issue and will require help from an experienced birth injury lawyer. You need to show that the doctor failed to act the same way another trained professional would have. In some cases, you will need to gather expert testimony or evidence from medical experts to support your claim.
A birth injury lawyer can help you gather evidence for your lawsuit. Information that you need includes:
- Medical records: You need a complete record of your medical history for you and your baby. Gather documents that show prenatal treatment and what happened during your delivery, baby’s birth, and postpartum care. Your hospital should provide you with a complete copy of your medical records during your delivery and labor if you gave birth at a hospital.
- Employment records: These are the records from your doctor and other health care providers named in the case. They show their work history and if they had previous care complaints.
- Expert witnesses: Gather information from other professionals who have similar experiences and expertise in your case. They can provide a second opinion or discuss if malpractice occurred.
- Eyewitness testimony: Hear from other people in the delivery room who can provide information about what happened and give insight into your care.
If you have questions about a birth injury and how a lawyer could help in your case, contact LegalASAP. We can connect you with our experienced attorneys and experts in birth injury lawsuits for a free review of your case. Contact us today.