Significant Birth Complications in Medical Negligence Claims

Jeff Varcadipane

October 19, 2022

Significant Birth Complications in Medical Negligence Claims

Medical negligence cases may extend to delivery and birth-related injuries. When this occurs, lifelong medical problems may develop. While some injuries affect the mother, other injuries trigger health problems for the newborn. If you or your child suffered birth-related injuries, seek help from a medical malpractice attorney immediately. 

Significant Birth Complications for the Mother

In cases where the mother is injured or dies, some of the conditions may include:

  • Problems because of improper suturing after an episiotomy or cesarean section
  • Uterine rupture
  • Infection
  • Incontinence
  • Leaving medical devices or supplies inside the patient
  • Complications from anesthesia
  • Undetected preeclampsia, which may cause a seizure during birth

Preeclampsia is a condition where the mother’s high blood pressure may lead to problems with placental development.

Newborn Complications

When a doctor’s or health care provider’s negligence leads to a birth injury to a newborn, it may originate from complications from a forceps delivery. This may lead to:

  • An increased risk of jaundice
  • Fracture of the skull
  • Cerebral palsy
  • Hemorrhaging
  • Bruising

In some cases, a birth injury to a newborn may result in:

All of the above conditions occur from an absence or deficiency of oxygen in the blood.

Permanent Disabilities

A birth injury can also cause a permanent disability, such as:

  • Cognitive and developmental problems
  • Nervous system conditions
  • Spinal cord damage
  • Cranial injury

In some instances, newborns may suffer from paralysis or an intra-abdominal injury. Improper deliveries can also lead to damage to the liver and internal organs.

If a newborn’s injury relates to hemorrhaging or bleeding of the brain, it may lead to impairments in mobility, speaking, and learning. Some children suffer from epilepsy after a birth injury.

Some of the symptoms may not surface until weeks or even years after the delivery. 

On the other hand, some of the symptoms are visible the right way, especially if a child has broken bones or a fracture. If you notice abnormalities related to breathing or your child cries excessively, you need to see a physician immediately. 

Filing a Negligence Claim: What You Need to Prove

To prove a birth injury claim, the claimant must show that the other party was negligent based on the elements of a negligence claim. These elements include the following actions.

  • The defendant’s duty to act or not act led to a breach
  • Because of this breach, the healthcare provider did not follow a reasonable course of treatment – a course most healthcare providers would follow in the same situation
  • As a result, the plaintiff sustained an injury
  • This injury led to damages in the form of medical costs, pain and suffering, or lost wages

You cannot file a negligence claim if an injury occurred without negligence or someone’s negligence did not lead to an injury. Therefore, an attorney must establish that the health care provider was negligent and that their negligence did indeed cause the plaintiff to suffer an injury that led to significant costs, hardship, or suffering.

In this type of case, medical experts often are called to support the claim, so the discovery process may be extensive or take a long time. Therefore, the cost of pursuing the claim might be more than what the plaintiff may be awarded if the claim is settled out of court. 

That’s why it’s important to obtain an attorney’s advice before you consider pursuing a claim.

Examples of Medical Malpractice

Medical malpractice may take various forms, including the following:

  • Misdiagnosis or a failure to misdiagnose
  • A failure to recognize symptoms
  • A failure to order the proper test
  • Misinterpreting test results
  • Disregarding the patient’s history
  • Incorrect dosages
  • Poor follow-up care

Birth Practices and Negligence

When it comes, specifically, to a birth injury, malpractice may take the form of:

  • Twisting or pulling an infant during delivery
  • A post-mature or premature delivery because of incorrect dating
  • Failure to provide enough oxygen to the newborn
  • A delivery using a vacuum extraction or forceps
  • Failure to perform a C-section (cesarean delivery)
  • Failure to monitor the fetal heartbeat
  • Rh factor incompatibility

As you can see, a birth complication claim is not set in stone. There are extenuating factors you need to review before submitting a claim. Again, that is why you should contact an attorney. He or she can review your case and determine if you have the necessary evidence and proof to proceed with a claim.

Contact an Attorney Today

You should also contact a lawyer if you suspect medical negligence. Consult with an attorney who has experience in these types of court filings. In New Jersey, contact Varcadipane & Pinnisi, PC at (800) 370-1749 today.

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