When a newborn faces a severe injury after birth, everybody is concerned. The complications that occur during and after birth can last for the rest of the child's life, potentially leading to disability.
While most babies born in the United States do not suffer birth trauma, you may still have concerns about your future birth or the birth of your previous children. Know what types of events cause birth injuries to aid in preventing them and moving forward. Read on to learn more about birth injuries and their common causes.
The Types of Birth Injuries
Birth injuries vary across the board. While some children are injured as a result of a doctor's error, contributing factors could lead to additional difficulties. As a result, a court may determine that human error is only partially at fault for an injury.
Several types of nerve injuries are somewhat common as part of the birth process: Erb's palsy, Bell's palsy, and cerebral palsy.
Erb's palsy is the result of damage to nerves and tendons in the shoulders. Bell's palsy occurs when a child's facial nerve becomes damaged during birth. Many people first notice this issue when the baby cries and one side of the face is different from the other. Cerebral palsy is another concern that influences the body's motor function and control.
Caput succedaneum is a condition that involves swelling of the scalp after birth. This pressure is more common after labors that are long and difficult. This could be linked to a variety of issues, including a lack of amniotic fluid.
Broken bones are another possible danger to infants. Tools used to assist in birth or even a medical professional dropping a baby may lead to broken bones. Rather than broken bones, bruising can occur and may be more serious than it initially appears.
Of course, this is not the extent of the injuries that can occur. If you notice anything strange about your newborn's demeanor or health, alert a medical professional immediately. Quick action may prevent further injury.
The Cause of Birth Injuries
Often, these injuries occur because the pediatrician, doctor, nurse, or hospital is negligent. The size of the baby can come into play too. Large babies may be more difficult to deliver, especially when doctors need to use forceps and other tools. The longer it takes the baby to be born, the bigger chance issues may develop.
Sometimes, a doctor will try to force a baby out of the womb by steering it in one direction. They may pull or twist on the baby in the process. This can result in issues like Erb's palsy. Forceps can also lead to other head, face, neck, spinal cord, and nerve injuries.
Prescriptions taken by pregnant woman can impact the child. Doctors who prescribe these medications negligently may ignore the dangers the medications could pose to a newborn or developing child.
Some birth injuries are caused by oxygen deprivation, often prompted by a staff member's lack of monitoring. Oxygen deprivation can lead to significant lifelong issues like cerebral palsy.
Any head trauma during a child's delivery can lead to damage to the nervous system and brain. These could include cerebral palsy or hematoma. These conditions can be quite serious if left untreated.
The Justice for Birth Injuries
Some birth injuries are immediate, while others may not appear for a long period of time. You need to take action as soon as you notice something strange is occurring. If you need help understanding birth injuries and your legal rights, you need to talk to an attorney. Cartee & Lloyd Attorneys At Law can help you. Call us today to set up a consultation.