Birth Injury Lawyer Indianapolis
Babies require a lot of joy, attention, and energy. However, a birth injury can cause long-term damage that may have been avoidable with proper care. When these tragedies occur due to the incompetency of a medical professional, then you may be entitled to compensation for serious birth injuries.
A birth injury lawsuit can be difficult, especially when you’re pursuing medical negligence. That’s why you should contact seasoned birth injury lawyers. Personal injury attorneys can help you understand your options for your Indianapolis birth injury.
Birth Injury or Birth Defect: What’s the Difference?
A child can experience birth defects due to a host of issues from a bacterial infection to a genetic defect. A birth injury typically occurs while birthing, commonly due to the carelessness or inaction of a medical professional. The main difference between birth injuries and birth defects is the cause.
Birth injuries are often caused by trauma at birth, whereas birth defects develop when the child is in utero during pregnancy. Birth defects include conditions such as Down Syndrome, cleft palate, or spina bifida.
A personal injury lawyer can help you get to the cause of your Indianapolis birth injury. Birth injury lawyers help victims pursue legal reconciliation for medical malpractice.
A skilled Indiana birth injury attorney will scrutinize the medical records and events surrounding your child’s birth to determine whether his or her birth injury resulted from medical malpractice.
Causes of Birth Injury
Babies are vulnerable. They can suffer injuries during birth, injuries that can be mild or life-changing. Birth injuries vary, and some have unexpected repercussions. The following conditions that may be linked to a difficult birth include:
- Birthweight over about 8 pounds, 13 ounces (4,000 grams)
- Babies born before 37 weeks
- Cephalopelvic disproportion
- Prolonged labor
- Abnormal birthing presentation
- Maternal obesity
- Fetal oxygen deprivation
- Delayed birth
- Trauma from impact during delivery
- Nerve injury or damage
- Head and brain injuries, including a skull fracture
- Cerebral palsy
Despite all the advances in the birth process, medical professionals still make mistakes. Common examples of doctor errors leading to birth injuries include the following:
- Vacuum extraction of a large baby of a first-time mom
- Failure to recognize that a fetus is in distress during labor
- Failure to detect or mitigate umbilical cord complications
- Failure to properly manage vaginal birth after C-section (VBAC)
Indiana residents who experience complications in labor and delivery, medication errors, fetal distress, and any other life-threatening conditions can seek compensation. An Indianapolis birth injury lawyer can help ease your financial burden by pursuing maximum compensation against negligent healthcare providers.
Birth Injury Rates
Birth trauma can cause long-term consequences and infant deaths. According to the CDC, about 700 women die each year in the United States as a result of pregnancy or delivery complications. Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is the leading cause of death and disability in children.
Not all birth injuries are caused by medical malpractice, but negligence on the part of medical professionals is all too often the cause. Mothers who have suffered an injury during birth and parents of babies who have suffered a brain, spinal cord, or any other birth injury should contact the Indianapolis birth injury attorneys of RileyCate, LLC.
Birth Injuries and Medical Malpractice
Medical negligence claims for childbirth arise when doctors are not acting properly or fail to provide the necessary services after birth. Birth-related medical errors occur when medical personnel act negligently, causing injury to a newborn or mother. Doctors should use appropriate techniques and training to prevent birth injuries.
Cesarean sections are alternatives to vaginal birth. When C-sections aren’t performed properly, it can lead to excess scar tissue, deformity, broken bones, severed bowels, and infertility in the mother. If you suffered a botched c-section, it likely occurred because of an error by the medical professional.
Brachial Plexus Injuries
The brachial plexus is a network of nerves that sends signals from the spine to the shoulder, arms, and hands. A newborn could sustain brachial plexus injuries when its shoulders are forced down and its neck is forced up, sometimes during delivery or prolonged labor. A brachial plexus injury can result in the following:
- Inability to use shoulder or elbow muscles
- Inability to move fingers
- Lack of movement and feeling in the arms, shoulders, and hands
Shoulder dystocia occurs when the baby’s shoulders become wedged in the birth canal. Improper handling of shoulder dystocia can cause permanent nerve injuries or Erb’s palsy.
Birth-related anxiety disorders can contribute to cerebral palsy. Cerebral palsy often means constant and continuous medical checks or procedures, physical therapy, and re-use of wheelchairs or crutches. Infection during pregnancy could lead to cerebral palsy and brain injury.
When a baby suffers oxygen deprivation, they may develop a brain injury known as hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy (HIE). This condition often leads to the development of cerebral palsy and other forms of brain damage.
When too much pressure is applied to the top of a baby’s head during a difficult or long delivery, it may cause bruising, discoloration, swelling, or a lump on the scalp known as Caput Succedaneum.
Failure to Diagnose Postpartum Depression
Postpartum depression occurs after pregnancy and can affect mothers for months or years. It could lead to infant deaths due to inattention or accidental trauma. Post-natal depression affects up to 80% of women and 10% of fathers. Failure to properly monitor the mother can lead to serious health complications, which may be life-threatening.
Prenatal Care Malpractice
According to 2017-2019 data from Maternal Mortality Review Committees (MMRCs), more than 80% of pregnancy-related deaths were preventable. The consequences of malpractice on mothers and children can be life-shattering. In the worst-case scenarios, medical negligence can lead to infant death.
Birth injury cases seek justice for how your child suffered due to improper medical care. Most parents don’t know everything that can cause complications in pregnancy or what all the risk factors are. Here are some of the basic standards of prenatal care:
- Assessment of the patient’s medical history, lifestyle, and other factors
- Conduct regular examinations like ultrasound, blood work, and non-stress tests
- Educate the patient about proper nutrition and lifestyle
- Identify and prevent potential complications through risk assessment
- Keep a detailed medical history and share records with the patient when requested
- Treat complications that arise and keep track of outcomes
- Talk with the patient about risks and complications
Birth Injury Cases
According to Indiana’s State Information Center, 83,000 babies are born each year in Indiana hospitals and birthing centers. Medical negligence can occur when a health care provider fails to:
- Diagnose a potential complication
- Use proper medical equipment
- Order a cesarean section in a timely manner
Seeking Compensation for a Birth Injury
If you or your child have suffered an injury during birth, you may be worried about covering the additional expenses that come with treatment. Damages that you can recover following someone’s negligent actions include:
- The sum of your medical expenses
- Lost wages for attending various medical appointments
- Future projected lost income
- Projected medical costs
- Ongoing pain and suffering
Following a serious injury due to negligence or medical errors during pregnancy, labor, or delivery, seek the advice and representation of experienced birth injury lawyers who can hold doctors and hospitals accountable.