Child Birth Injury in Birmingham, AL
No one wants to let their mind go down this path, but there could be a moment where you or a loved one is injured during childbirth, through neglect or medical malpractice. Alabama Statute only gives a 2 year window in order to press your rights against childbirth injuries. If you feel that you have been injured in this way, you may want to contact an experienced Birmingham attorney to help you fight this fight.
What Causes a Childbirth Injury?
Was a medical professional you trusted negligent and did the damage occur as a result? If so, affected parents have a chance of bringing a medical malpractice lawsuit for compensation in Birmingham, AL.
During any labor and delivery process, timing and action are two crucial elements. Sometimes an infant suffers a birth injury. It can mean that a medical practitioner either made a poor judgment call or failed to act appropriately. If the Birmingham 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 are not reached.
Birmingham Real Time News reports that a jury awarded $16 million to a couple who filed suit against Brookwood Medical Center for negligence and reckless fraud. The medical center had advertised a whole campaign around natural childbirth at their facility, but when it came time for the mother to deliver, they forcibly restrained her at times and would not allow her a say in her treatment.
As a result of the difficult delivery, she developed chronic pelvic floor problems. The jury awarded $10 million for negligence, $5 million for fraud, and $1 million for loss of consortium.
Beyond this, there are quite a few scenarios that may cause a child to sustain an injury while being born in Birmingham. 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. Birmingham medical professionals may intervene and use a vacuum to assist. This 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.
In this case, attending medical professionals may use forceps to help move a baby 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.
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 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 Birmingham, Alabama 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 the infant’s 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.
What Are Some Other Possible Causes of Childbirth Injury In Birmingham?
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
MedlinePlus states that facial nerve palsy, or facial paralysis, can be caused in infants just before or during the birthing process. Certain causes for this are unknown, but oftentimes it can be attributed to a long and difficult delivery. However certain factors that were once thought to have been involved in facial paralysis have been disproven. Factors such as long pregnancies, use of epidural, or use of drugs to induce labor; none of these contribute to facial paralysis.
Bruising and Swelling
Pregnancy Birth Baby states that while bruising and swelling can occur for a variety of reasons during the birth process, you should keep a watch over the injury to be certain that it is not symptomatic of some larger problem. Bruising and swelling of the scalp is generally attributed to too much force being applied when removing the baby from the birth canal.
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 Birmingham, 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.
According to The Alabama Department of Public Health, the infant mortality rate for those living in the state is 7.0 infant deaths per every 1,000 live births. Any Birmingham resident that believes they have been the victim of malpractice or negligence during childbirth should consider contacting an experienced Birmingham attorney.
Work With an Experienced Local Child Birth Injury Lawyer In Birmingham, Alabama
If you suspect childbirth injury medical malpractice in Birmingham, you should take action. Find a local childbirth injury lawyer to navigate the often difficult waters of birth injury lawsuits. We can even help you connect with an attorney across Alabama 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!