Child Birth Injury in Alaska

The excitement and anxiety of childbirth can be overwhelming for parents in Alaska. But, when a terrible injury happens, it can feel like the world is crashing in on top of you.

Publications like Mother Jones have noted there are scary truths we have to confront regarding childbirth. Regardless of the challenges, you should know the law may be on your side.

Anyone facing a lifetime of effects deserves financial compensation for what follows. You can evaluate what you need with us through this guide today. Moreover, we can connect you with an experienced and compassionate legal counsel who will fight for your family.

What Causes a Childbirth Injury?

While enduring delivery, was a medical professional negligent towards you and did damage occur as a result? If so, affected parents have a chance of bringing a medical malpractice lawsuit for compensation in Alaska.

During the labor and delivery process, timing and action are two crucial elements. Sometimes an infant suffers a birth injury. This can mean that a medical practitioner either made a poor judgment call or failed to act appropriately. However, if the Alaska medical provider’s actions go against the standard of care, then it may fit the legal definition of negligence.

To prove birth injury, negligence must have a direct connection to the damage. One of the most unfortunate elements of childbirth injury is not discovering the effects right away. Some injuries are discernible immediately after they happen. However, things that affect the brain may not be evident until developmental milestones come, and are not reached.

News organizations like KTOO in Juneau have also noted the challenges of childbirth during COVID. Nurses, doctors, and midwives have all faced their fair share of challenges to ensure proper treatments.

Even further, there are quite a few scenarios that may cause a child to sustain an injury while being born in Alaska. One of the following examples may apply to your circumstances.

  • Improper Vacuum Usage

Sometimes a mother has difficulties delivering a baby through the birth canal. Alaska medical professionals may intervene and use a vacuum to assist. The machine is a standard instrument that can help suction the baby down and out of the birth canal. The vacuum attaches to the baby’s head or shoulders. Nurses and doctors are responsible for placing it appropriately. However, sometimes the vacuum is not attached where it should be. This error can cause severe injury to the mother and the infant during childbirth.

  • Improper Use of Forceps

There are other options when a mother is having difficulty delivering her child. For example, the baby can be improperly positioned in the womb. Attending medical professionals may use forceps to help move it through the birthing canal. Appropriate use of forceps reduces oxygen deprivation. This tool also reduces the chances of fetal distress that can result in birth injuries.

Still, the medical professionals that are birthing a child must use extreme care. The improper use of forceps can cause severe injuries to the head. Additionally, this device can also cause nerve damage in the neck or the chest.

  • Hypoxia

Hypoxia is a medical condition that occurs when the brain of a baby is not receiving enough oxygen. The most common cause before and during delivery is the umbilical cord becoming tangled around the baby’s neck.

This condition often occurs due to a damaged or infected placenta. Thankfully, most Alaska medical professionals can identify hypoxia well in advance. As a result, they can intercede to eliminate the chances of the infant or the mother facing harm.

However, if the professional medical staff does not take action quickly enough, asphyxiation may occur. This can result in causing a child to develop severe physical or mental disabilities. Accordingly, medical staff may be liable for any damages that happened.

  • Cesarean Section Delay

An emergency C-section may be necessary due to an infant fetal distress. This medical event occurs when the heartbeat of the infant drops because of the mother’s blood pressure. In addition, this condition can happen when there is a placental abruption or other breathing difficulties.

In truth, there are several reasons why a doctor may perform a C-section. For example, the baby could be in the wrong position or fail to descend into the birth canal. Another qualifying situation is when the mother has labored without dilation.

In these and other circumstances, the doctor may determine whether this procedure needs to happen. It may be the only way to safely birth the baby without further damage. But, the medical staff may wait too long to perform a cesarean. If so, the consequences for mother and child could be quite grave.

  • Klumpke Palsy

Klumpke palsy refers to nerve damage in the brachial plexus that can happen during childbirth. As a result, the newborn will have problems with wrist and hand movements. A traumatic birth can make this occur, especially if an obstetrician pulls them out of the birth canal the wrong way. This unfortunate event tends to happen one to three times per 1,000 births.

  • Fractures

There are many types of fractures that can happen during a traumatic childbirth in Alaska. In some circumstances, they can also lead to dangerous hemorrhaging. These events are less frequent due to new techniques and equipment. But, there are still incidents because of improper practice or implementation of medical devices.

  • Nerve Injuries

The Anesthesia Patient Safety Foundation says that nerve damage happens in 0.3% to 3% of births. Unfortunately, the use of anesthesia can contribute to their emergence. Because they are relatively rare events, there is not much you can do to predict the risks involved. Regardless of these facts, it is clear that a misjudgment by an anesthesiologist may lead to dire consequences.

What Are Some Other Possible Causes of Childbirth Injury in Alaska?

Other types of medical neglect that could result in injuries to the child or the birth mother include:

  • Failing to perform sufficient prenatal testing
  • Not using labor-inducing drugs timely
  • Failing to diagnose or treat infections, umbilical cord entrapment, placental abruption, premature rupture of the membranes or placenta previa
  • Not addressing changes in the baby’s condition

Why Should You Take Action for Your Child Birth Injury?

It is essential that any parent whose child has been diagnosed with a birth injury in Alaska, take action to seek financial compensation. The most practical reason to pursue a childbirth injury lawsuit is to protect your financial future. A child and their mother may have to deal with a lifetime of setbacks and disabilities. The costs for treatment, medical equipment, and medications can overwhelm your budget quickly. As well, the trajectory of your life or your child’s can depend on pursuing civil action.

The health of children and their mothers is a high priority for Alaska’s state government. Since 1989, there has been a Maternal and Child Death review to identify issues with treatment. Accordingly, significant resources exist to find risk factors and prevent injury or death. If you have been through a traumatic experience, there will be plenty of evidence-based reasons to begin litigation.

Work With an Experienced Local Child Birth Injury Lawyer in Alaska

If you expect birth injury medical malpractice in Alaska, you should take action. Cases can vary sharply depending on the state in which the injury occurs. Find a local child birth injury lawyer to navigate the often difficult waters of birth injury lawsuits. We can even help you connect with an attorney across Alaska state lines.

Submit a request online or call us today at (866) 345-6784 to get in touch with an experienced lawyer in your area!

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