Birth injury refers to a wide set of problems that affect the mother or baby that occur during pregnancy and delivery. The most common causes of these problems is the result of genetics; however, pregnancy complications and accidents during labor and delivery may be caused by carelessness and late intervention on the part of health care providers. Health issues that come up post-delivery for the mother and baby can also be included in birth injuries.
Your Rights as a Parent
For any parent, whether they are having their first, second or third child, a new birth is an eagerly anticipated special event. It is difficult enough to come to terms with a health condition that is not preventable, but when the baby is harmed as a result of medical negligence it can be devastating. It becomes a long emotional struggle that the whole family has to learn to live with, and in many cases, the financial burden is overwhelming and shatters the sense of security for your family.
Fortunately, in these situations there is help available, and there are legal actions you can take to put your life back on track and get the help you may need to take care of yourself and your baby. You have the right to hold the medical professionals who were in charge of the safety of your delivery responsible for their failure to take adequate and appropriate care.
Different Types of Negligence and Malpractice
Many types of birth injuries can be prevented. If you and your baby have been through a trauma and you want to be able to determine whose fault it is, understand what caused the incident, know your rights and what you are entitled to, a birth injury lawyer in cleveland can be of great assistance.
Here are some examples that qualify as negligence on the part of the medical team looking after you:
• Delay in ordering a cesarean section
• Inadequate preparation of delivering a premature baby
• Inducing early labor by the misuse of oxytocin (a natural hormone made synthetically)
• Failure to see and treat the signs of oxygen deprivation
• Inadequate and ineffective resuscitation of the newborn baby
• Failure to diagnose and treat placental abruption also known as placenta previa
• Delaying the order for proper care for a woman with a high-risk pregnancy
• Not ordering proper prenatal tests and failure to read the results properly
• Failure to diagnose or the prolonged delay in treating premature rupture of the membranes
• Careless use of forceps or vacuum extraction during delivery
• Inadequate care and failure to monitor health of the baby and mother throughout pregnancy
• Failure to respond to bleeding, treat fetal distress and treat umbilical cord entrapment
Devastating Birth Injuries
An injury can occur at any time during the pregnancy, and whether you are having your first baby or you are delivering your fourth, it is an overwhelming experience that requires support from your doctors. The expertise of reading lab reports and conducting tests is out of your hands, and you rely on the instruction and care of the medical team to ensure the safety of yourself and your baby. When this trust is abused to the detriment of your baby, the law is on your side and you can take legal action.
These injuries can be minor bruises, bumps and cuts that are caused by rough handling but leave no permanent damage and heal quickly. However, an error in judgment during the delivery can cause devastating consequences for the baby and mother. Some birth injuries cannot be prevented, but some are caused by tragic situations that could have been avoided. These injuries can result in the need of life long care for the child, trauma and financial strain for the family.
Devastating injuries can cause conditions such as:
• Cerebral palsy
• Brachial Plexus
• Intra-abdominal injuries
• Musculoskeletal injuries
Get an Evaluation or Second Opinion
Although your doctor or nurse may have caused the injury to your baby, they are also the medical team that cared about you and helped you through the birth of your baby. If you feel something is wrong, talk to your doctor and inform him/her that you want an examination and further tests done to determine what happened. A full evaluation of your baby with their support will help any legal proceedings you decided to take. If he/she refuses to cooperate with you, get a second opinion.
Contacting a Birth Injury Lawyer
Determining who is responsible for the trauma or injury caused to your baby and whether you have a birth injury claim can be a difficult task involving complex legal and medical issues. A birth injury lawyer can provide the necessary experience and expertise to assist you in diagnosing your case and coming to a satisfactory conclusion on where you stand and what compensation, if any, you are entitled to receive.
Collect all the information and records you can, and when possible, get photo copies of test results. Write down your feeling and experiences so you don’t forget any details when you meet with the lawyer, and have a list of questions ready to ask. Your lawyer will be able to assist you in properly getting together all the information you need from doctors, other care providers, witnesses and insurance companies.
Most birth injury lawsuits can be settled out of court. This means that your attorney will contact your doctor and negotiate a settlement with his/her malpractice insurance carrier. You may not have to appear in court in this situation; you can give your deposition in a conference room or in a similar place. However, there is no way to determine how your case will be settled. The best way forward is to meet with a birth injury attorney and find the best course of action to get the result you deserve.
Birth injury lawyers have experience in investigating and pursuing pregnancy and delivery malpractice cases. Call a birth injury lawyer for your first free appointment and have the satisfaction of knowing where you stand and what actions you can take.