Traverse City Birth Injury Attorneys
Birth injuries have a devastating impact on children, their parents, and other family members who devote extensive time and energy to the child’s care and needs. Your family has the right to be compensated for losses caused by negligent medical care rendered during pregnancy, labor, delivery, or immediately after birth.
Call our Traverse City personal injury attorneys at Michigan Injury Lawyers for your free initial consultation.
Common Birth Injuries
Your child can suffer any number of birth injuries as a result of negligent medical care. The most common include:
According to the Centers for Disease Control, cerebral palsy is caused by abnormal development of the brain or damage to the developing brain that affects a child’s ability to control his or her muscles. Birth is a traumatic event that can easily damage the brain if a doctor is not careful. In turn, this can cause a child to suffer from cerebral palsy.
Erb’s Palsy (Brachial Plexus Palsy)
The brachial plexus is a complex network of nerves that control the arms and hands. This site can be injured during birth—especially if the obstetrician pulls, twists, or applies too much pressure to this area during delivery. Injuries in this area can lead to permanent nerve damage that impairs the use of the arms and hands.
Infants have soft bones that can be broken easily—especially during the physical trauma of delivery. Skull fractures can lead to brain damage that may cause your child to suffer developmental delays and other cognitive difficulties.
Infants can easily suffer from a lack of oxygen (“hypoxia”) during labor and delivery. The umbilical cord can become compressed or even strangle the baby. Prolonged labor might impair your baby’s oxygen levels. Medical staff have a legal obligation to monitor your baby’s oxygen levels throughout labor and delivery and take appropriate steps to correct any deficits.
Hydrocephalus literally means “water on the brain.” It occurs when cerebrospinal fluid backs up into the ventricles of the brain. This can occur if there is trauma to a baby’s head during delivery. Your child might require complex neurosurgery to place a shunt that will allow for the proper flow of cerebrospinal fluid. In addition to physical symptoms such as headaches, dizziness, or vomiting, your child can suffer problems with speech and language. Many children suffer seizures as a result of hydrocephalus.
This is bleeding that occurs within the head, between the skull and its protective membrane. It presents as a bump on the head that shows up within hours of birth. The bump can last from a couple of weeks to months after birth. Like any type of bleeding, this condition can resolve on its own can also calcify if it is left too long without treatment. Bleeding can also cause other complications, such as a lack of oxygen to various parts of the body. The extent of the injury will be determined by what part of the body was affected and how long it was left without an adequate blood supply.
Signs Your Child Might Have a Birth Injury
After a birth injury, your child might suffer from a physical or mental condition. Mental conditions are usually the result of brain damage at birth. This can be caused by a lack of oxygen or trauma to the head. Children who suffer from these types of injuries will often fail to reach developmental milestones (such as crawling, standing up, or walking) at the usual age. Later, when the child is school-aged, he or she might suffer from learning challenges or disabilities.
Physical injuries will manifest in different ways, depending on what part of the child’s body was injured during childbirth. For example, Erb’s Palsy affects the hand and arm. If your child is unable to use one arm properly, this could be a sign of nerve damage. The arm might appear weak, or have a limited range of motion, or be painful to the child. Lack of muscle or neurological coordination can also be a sign of nerve damage. If a bone appears misshapen or is painful to the touch, this could be a sign that the bone was broken during childbirth.
Common Mistakes Doctors Make During Pregnancy, Labor, and Delivery
Certain mistakes are common in pregnancy, labor, delivery, and postnatal care. Doctors must be aware of these mistakes and take reasonable steps to prevent them. Failure to do so is negligence, and this can lead to a medical malpractice lawsuit for the birth injuries that occur as a result.
The Most Common Mistakes That Lead to Birth Injuries Include:
- Improper prenatal care (prescribing dangerous medications, failure to diagnose a genetic anomaly or medical condition with the baby, etc.)
- Failure to properly diagnose and treat preeclampsia before birth
- Failure to adequately treat prolonged labor (prolonged labor puts added stress on the baby)
- Medication errors during pregnancy, labor, or delivery
- Waiting too long to complete a Cesarean section, or making mistakes in completing the procedure
- Failure to properly balance the competing medical interests of mother and child
- Improper use of delivery equipment (forceps, vacuum extractor, etc.)
- Improper handling of the baby during delivery (twisting, pulling, etc.)
- Failure to diagnose medical conditions after birth
- Inadequate postnatal care
Call Us Today to Discuss Your Case with a Traverse City Birth Injury Lawyer
Birth injuries are devastating for the families who must suffer the consequences of medical negligence. Birth injuries are often preventable, and it is important to hold medical providers and facilities accountable when they fail to do so. This reduces the chances that other innocent children will be harmed by preventable errors in the future.
Call Michigan Injury Lawyers at (231) 649-2720 or click here for your free initial consultation. Our experienced Traverse City birth injury lawyers know how to prove the value of birth injuries and demand fair compensation for all the losses you have suffered.