Birth Injury Lawsuits in Pennsylvania
A new baby should be a tremendous joyful experience; unfortunately, birth injuries can change the whole panorama. That’s when you may need a birth injury lawyer on your side.
The birth of a child is a magical time, the long-awaited welcome of a new family member and unique individual into the world. Though it is inevitably intense, the process of birth would be safely engaged and protected, surrounded by loved ones and knowledgeable doctors. What happens, then, when during birth or even the pregnancy, a healthcare practitioner’s negligence leads to illness or injury for the child? What are your rights as parents to seek financial compensation for the resulting healthcare that could last the child’s entire life? Read on to learn more about birth injuries and how a skilled Pennsylvania birth injury attorney can support you in recovering the highest amount of damages while prioritizing your need to focus your primary energy on bonding with your newborn.
What is a Birth Injury?
A birth injury is any form of harm or bodily damage that an infant suffers before birth during pregnancy, amidst the process of labor and delivery, or shortly after childbirth.
What are the Leading Causes of Birth Injuries?
There are a number of factors that could cause a birth becoming a difficult or dangerous event leading to a birth injury. One primary factor is called dystocia, which is the term used for generally difficult labor or childbirth. Dystocia could include or occur because of a difficult or extensive labor, the size of the child (i.e., a large infant with whom it is difficult to exit the birth canal), the position of the child (i.e., a baby in a breech position, whereby their head isn’t the first out, but instead an arm or their rear), or the shape of a mother’s pelvis creating difficulties for a vaginal birth.
While these issues elevate the level of caution and care from a mother’s attending physicians and other support staff, they do not necessarily mean that the child and mother will not come through the birth process healthy and whole. However, when within these high-risk factors a medical provider makes a mistake or overlooks a risk that leads to an emergency for the child, they can be held responsible if a birth injury occurs.
For example, a doctor’s failure to properly care for the child by identifying fetal distress could result in the child not receiving proper oxygen levels, which could create lifelong damage to their brain function. A baby could also be harmed by their improper or forceful extraction from the mother, either by a tool or manually; this could include a dislocated shoulder or wrist or even damage to the child’s skull and neck.
In terms of the mother, medical provider error could take many forms. While some birth injuries occur due to negligence or mistake on the part of the medical professional at the time of labor and delivery, some mothers show risk factors that could affect the birth. It is the responsibility of the healthcare professional to identify these risks and adequately prepare for scenarios in which those risk factors play a role in delivery. Some examples are obesity in the mother, eclampsia, diabetes, sexually transmitted infections, and vaginal births after c-sections.
During pregnancy, failure to recognize such symptoms in the mother, such as high blood pressure, could result in failure to be properly prepared to treat the dangerous condition of preeclampsia in pregnancy or eclampsia after delivery, by which the mother’s high blood pressure leads to seizures. During early labor, a negligent doctor could improperly administer Pitocin, and during later stages of the process, they could improperly administer an epidural. And if a c-section is scheduled or an emergency c-section is required, conducting the surgery improperly could place both the mother and child at risk and lead to longer-term dysfunction for the mother.
These only touch on the reasons for birth injury – for this reason, we turn to highly trained and experienced doctors and nurse practitioners, midwives, and medical providers such as anesthesiologists to serve as highly qualified medical experts for investigating and supporting our clients’ birth injury claims.
What Are Some Types of Birth Injuries?
One common birth injury is fractures of the collarbone or clavicle as the child attempts to exit the small birth canal. Healing is rapid with care and little movement, occurring within the first few weeks. Brachial palsy, in which the nerves that supply the arms and hands are injured, can cause momentary inability to move the arm or cause permanent nerve damage. Cerebral palsy, in which oxygen supply is cut from the brain, can cause lifelong severe injury that affects the child’s ability to walk, speak, and develop intellectually, as well as causing seizures.
What Should I do if I Think My Child Suffered A Birth Injury?
If you think your child has suffered a birth injury, seek medical support right away. Once your child is safely in the care of a healthcare professional, contact a birth injury lawyer to see if you have a case for birth injury resulting from medical malpractice.
Can I Sue For A Birth Injury in Bucks County PA?
You can file a lawsuit in a birth injury case to recover damages due to medical malpractice, which in some cases may be lifelong. Your birth injury lawyer will be an essential ally in helping you prove that the child’s or mother’s birth injury was caused by negligence or practitioner error.
Book a Consultation with a Talented Birth Injury Firm in Bensalem, PA
When you or your child have experienced a birth injury, you must have the support of an experienced medical malpractice attorney. At this time in your lives, your focus is meant to be on bonding with your child, resting, and recuperating from the birth experience. Our skilled birth injury team will do the work to help prove that your birth injury was caused by negligence and claim the damages you deserve to give your child all the care they need for their life, regardless of birth outcomes.
We understand how much is at risk for your infant’s well-being and long-term health and happiness when it comes to birth injury. Have you or your infant been injured before or during birth, and you think medical malpractice may have played a part? We can help you recover financial damages caused by the practitioner while you focus your energy on welcoming the newborn into their new family.
We represent clients in Fairless Hills, Bensalem, Bristol, Croydon, Doylestown, Levittown, Warminster, Yardley and neighboring towns in Northeast Philadelphia & Lower Bucks County Pennsylvania, ensuring that families are supported when a birth emergency has upended what is supposed to be one of the happiest times of a family’s life. We at Cohen & Riechelson exist to help your family recover the resources you need to thrive. Contact us at (215) 337-4915 or fill out our online contact form for a free consultation to schedule an appointment to review your case.