Caesarean section risks and benefits have been debated by doctors for over 25 years. In 2007, a study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that the Caesarean rate was the highest ever reported in the United States, with 1.4 million births by C-section. In Michigan alone, the rate of Caesarean births increased by 50 percent between 1996 and 2007.
While a C-section may be vital to the safe delivery of your baby, it unfortunately can also pose risks that can lead to serious birth injuries for both the infant and the mother. Sometimes, those complications can be caused by negligence on the part of hospital physicians and staff – and parents may have legal rights to pursue actions against them.
Caesarean Sections and Your Injuries
A Caesarean section is a surgical operation used to deliver babies. The procedure is often used in emergency situations during childbirth. Physicians make an incision in the laboring mother’s belly and uterus to extract the infant.
Obstetricians recommend Caesarean sections to parents for a variety of reasons, particularly when there are signs of abnormal fetal development, an abnormal heart rate, umbilical cord problems or when the baby is in a breech position. C-sections are also used when the infant is large or there are multiple births, such as twins. Older mothers between ages 40 and 54 are also more likely candidates for Caesarean delivery.
Birth injuries caused by C-sections may have short- and long-term consequences for both mother and child, such as:
- Uterine rupture and VBAC: For various reasons, obstetricians may recommend that a mother who previously had a C-section try a vaginal delivery when she becomes pregnant again. Complications that can arise include uterine rupture, which would cause the placenta to stop functioning and deprive the baby of oxygen. That could lead to brain injuries in the newborn.
- Surgical adhesions: Adhesions arise when scar tissue from prior C-sections forms inside the abdomen and pelvis. In future C-sections, doctors will have to cut through the adhesions to deliver the baby, which can cost valuable time during emergencies.
- Reactions to anesthesia: A C-section is a full-scale operation, which requires the use of drugs that may cause bad reactions for the baby and mother.
- Infections: Although C-sections are performed in a sterile environment, they still carry the risk of infection in the mother’s uterus, bladder and around the site of the incision.
- Blood loss in the mother: Because the surgery is invasive, blood transfusions may be necessary due to increased bleeding.
While there is no way to predict a perfect outcome with a C-section delivery, physicians have a duty to inform the parents of the risks of performing the operation. The CDC also says the procedure is twice as expensive as a vaginal delivery and requires longer recovery time, causing significant financial burdens for families to carry.
Contact Our Birth Injury Lawyers Today
Based in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan Injury Lawyers helps Michigan victims obtain compensation for their birth-related injuries. Call Michigan Injury Lawyers at 313-438-4357 or send us a confidential e-mail for a free evaluation of your claim.