Child Birth Injury in North Carolina

There are many moments that can be stressful; your first day at a new job, trying to write your own wedding vows, and watching UNC compete for the national title.

Still, there are few things in life that can match the stress and anxiety surrounding becoming a new parent. Adding to this is the fact that complications could occur during the birthing process, resulting in injury to the child, the mother, or both.

If you have experienced complications during birth that have resulted in injury, you may want to seek the counsel of an experienced attorney in North Carolina. He or she can help you fight to enforce your rights, and seek restitution if necessary.

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 North Carolina.

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 North Carolina 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.

In the developed world, maternal deaths during labor and delivery have been steadily rising. This can largely be attributed to negligence, improper planning for difficult deliveries, and overall improper care. USA Today provides an overview tracking this problematic situation. In every other developed nation, the maternal death rate during delivery has remained steady, or drastically fallen, since 1990. The U.S. is the only country where the rate has steadily risen. The maternal death rate sits at over 26 deaths per 1,000 births.

Even further, there are quite a few scenarios that may cause a child to sustain an injury while being born in North Carolina. 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. North Carolina 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 North Carolina 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.

What Are Some Other Possible Causes of Childbirth Injury in North Carolina?

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

Clavicle Fracture

Stanford Children’s records that clavicle fractures are the most common injury sustained by children when going through forced labor. This can occur if there is trouble getting the baby through the birth canal, or if the child is a breach born and turned the wrong way. If the clavicle is fractured, the child will not move the arm on the side of the injury.

Risk to Birth Mother

Pregnancy Birth and Baby also states that there can be significant risk of injury to the mothers during birth. Almost 3 in 4 women that deliver vaginally experience some type of perineal trauma; this is most typically a tear or surgical cut in the area between the vagina and the anus. Women giving birth could also experience nerve damage, muscle damage, and even pelvic organ prolapse.

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 North Carolina, 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 national average for infant deaths during childbirth is 5.7 per every 1,000 live births. However, North Carolina Child states that the rate for North Carolina is above the national average, sitting at 6.8. This problem is even more stark when dealing with minority communities, highlighting the need for more education and preventative measures.

Work With an Experienced Local Child Birth Injury Lawyer in North Carolina

If you expect birth injury medical malpractice in North Carolina, 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 North Carolina 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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