Child Birth Injury in Scranton, PA
When awaiting the birth of your child, it’s natural to have a flood of questions race through your mind. What kind of parent am I going to be? Am I prepared enough to do this? Did I read the manual well enough to properly install the car seat?
But what a parent should not have to deal with is a child or loved one being injured during the birthing process due to negligence or medical malpractice. If this has befallen you, or a loved one, you may want to seek the counsel of an experienced Scranton attorney.
What Causes a Childbirth Injury?
Was a medical professional you trusted negligent and did damage occur as a result? If so, affected parents have a chance of bringing a medical malpractice lawsuit for compensation in Scranton, PA.
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 Scranton 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.
Yahoo reports that a lawsuit in Scranton was recently settled for over $18 million regarding a brain injury a child sustained during childbirth. Yajaira Ocasio filed suit after her child sustained permanent brain damage when the hospital staff waited too long to induce delivery. This led to the child being deprived of oxygen, which caused the permanent damage.
Beyond this, there are quite a few scenarios that may cause a child to sustain an injury while being born in Scranton. 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. Scranton 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 Scranton, Pennsylvania 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 Scranton?
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
Infant jaundice can occur when the levels of bilirubin, a yellow pigment of red blood cells, becomes too high. The Mayo Clinic states that there are tell-tale symptoms of neonatal jaundice, such as yellowing of the skin, and of the whites of eyes. Medical staff should be sure to examine a child for jaundice between the 3rd and 7th days of life.
The Mayo Clinic states that Preeclampsia is a serious, and if left untreated, potentially fatal condition affecting both mother and child. Symptoms surrounding preeclampsia involve high blood pressure, loss of vision, pain in the upper abdomen on the right side, and difficulty breathing due to fluid in the lungs. If a mother develops preeclampsia, early delivery of the cold is almost always recommended.
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 Scranton, 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 Pennsylvania Department of Health, dropping the infant mortality rate by 2030 has become a top priority. As it currently stands America’s Health Rankings places the infant mortality rate in Pennsylvania at 5.7 deaths for every 1,000 live births that occur. While this is a 17% reduction since 2009, you may still want to consider contacting an experienced attorney in Scranton if your child has been injured during the birth process.
Work With an Experienced Local Child Birth Injury Lawyer in Scranton, Pennsylvania
If you suspect child birth injury medical malpractice in Scranton, you should take action. 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 Pennsylvania 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!