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Birth Injuries & Klumpke’s Palsy

Many expectant parents in Michigan have heard of cerebral palsy and shoulder dystocia as unfortunate types of birth injuries that can occur during delivery. But fewer know about Klumpke’s palsy, an injury that causes paralysis in the hand and finger flexors. Thankfully, that’s because the condition is rare. But it falls into a category of injuries that involves damage to spinal nerves, and the disorder can sometimes be permanent.

While it is true that some birth injuries are inevitable due to unexpected problems during labor, other times they happen because obstetricians or other healthcare providers failed to follow accepted standards of care during labor. Delivery of the shoulders is generally one of the easier parts of childbirth, but inattention to the baby’s position or failure to identify risk factors that could lead to nerve injuries may be malpractice.

If your baby has Klumpke’s palsy, it could be because a medical practitioner failed to take appropriate actions to during the birthing process. Contact the Michigan birth injury attorneys at Michigan Injury Lawyers by calling 313-438-4357. Our compassionate attorneys will evaluate your case to determine if there was wrongdoing and zealously work to help you get the compensation you deserve.

A Closer Look At Hospital Negligence

Hospital negligence is defined as the failure of hospital staff to provide the accepted standard of care, resulting in a patient’s injury or illness. Hospital staff can include nurses, medical technicians or other support professionals, as well as physicians. Some malpractice claims resulting from a hospital injury may involve a physician directly, while others may involve the hospital – the circumstances of your injury determine who could be held liable.

Hospital negligence can take many forms. Some of the most common instances of hospital negligence include the following:

  • Surgical errors;
  • Labor and delivery errors;
  • Medication errors;
  • Anesthesia errors;
  • Failure to respond to patient;
  • Failure to properly monitor patient;
  • Communication errors that result in delayed or incorrect treatment;
  • Improper patient discharge;
  • Failure to provide patients with post-operative directions;
  • Improper supervision of a new staff member, such as a nurse or nurse’s assistant;
  • Misplaced files;
  • Poor sanitation of medical instruments and hospital rooms;
  • Hospital abuse.

Regardless of the cause, the consequences of hospital negligence can be very dangerous. A poorly monitored patient’s condition may quickly worsen, causing long-term damage. Unsanitary conditions can lead to deadly infections. Mistakes in medication can have fatal complications.

Legal Help For Your Hospital Mistake Claim

If you have been injured as a result of hospital negligence, you are entitled to hold the institution accountable. However, hospitals employ their own legal counsel and are used to fighting negligence claims. A medical malpractice attorney with experience in hospital negligence claims can help evaluate the circumstances of your injury or illness and determine whether you have a case.

The medical negligence lawyers of Michigan Injury Lawyers represents victims and their families who have been hurt by hospital negligence. We work with qualified medical experts to carefully assess your injuries and your case to determine the most effective strategy designed with your best interests in mind. We have helped many victims in Michigan recover what was rightfully theirs. We can help you and your family too.

Understanding Klumpke’s Palsy

Klumpke’s Palsy results from damage to the brachial plexus, a network of nerves that control movement and feeling in the shoulder, arm and hand. Brachial plexus nerves run from the spine through the neck, armpit and arm. Any damage that occurs during a difficult delivery can result in paralysis of nerves in the brachial plexus region, resulting in Klumpke’s palsy and other problems.

It is rare for Klumpke’s palsy to occur in isolation. It is often accompanied by other brachial plexus injuries such as Erb’s palsy, which affects the upper arm and can cause instability in the shoulder. Babies with Klumpke’s palsy may have a drooping eyelid on one side as well.

Common causes for Klumpke’s palsy include:

  • The infant’s head and neck being pulled to the side as its shoulders pass through the birth canal;
  • Pulling on the shoulders during a headfirst delivery;
  • Pressure on the baby’s arms during a breech (feet-first) delivery

Other risk factors include:

  • Shoulder dystocia;
  • Maternal diabetes;
  • Large gestational size;
  • Difficult deliveries needing external help;
  • Long labor;
  • Breech position.

Recovering from Klumpke’s palsy

Like many nerve injuries, the potential for recovery from Klumpke’s palsy depends on the severity of the damage. Full recovery can only happen if the sensory and motor nerves re-connect with their original sensory and muscle targets, which might require surgery. Other times, cases of Klumpke’s Palsy resolve on their own or with physical therapy, occupational therapy and the use of electrical stimulation devices.

Brachial palsy injuries are classified in the following ways, depending on how badly the nerves are damaged:

  • Avulsion: The most severe type of injury, avulsion occurs when the nerves are torn completely from the spine. There is no potential for recovery without timely surgery.
  • Rupture: Ruptures occur when the nerve is torn, but not at the spine.
  • Neuroma: A neuroma results from when a nerve is torn and healed, but scar tissue puts pressure on the injured nerve and prevents it from conducting signals to the muscles.
  • Neuropraxia:The most common type of injury, neuropraxia happens when the nerve is stretched but not torn. Approximately 90-100 percent of patients with neuropraxia make a full recovery, according to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke.

Has Your Infant Been Injured? Call Our Klumpke’s Palsy Lawyers Today

If your baby was born with Klumpke’s palsy, it is possible that the injury was caused by negligence on the part of your medical practitioner during delivery. The birth injury attorneys at The Stroble Law Firm, P.C. can review your case and advise you of possible legal remedies.

Call the attorneys at Michigan Injury Lawyers at 313-438-4357 for a free evaluation of your claim. If there is no recovery in your case, there is no fee for our services.