Does My Child Have a Birth Injury Claim?

What is a birth injury?

Birth injuries refer to preventable injuries suffered prior to birth or in the period during and immediately after birth.  Unlike a birth defect (which is genetic and not the fault of anyone), a birth injury is an injury to the baby due to someone else’s negligence.  A birth injury can occur during pregnancy from inadequate testing to ensure maternal and fetal well-being. A birth injury can also occur during labor and delivery, as a result of lack of oxygen or blood flow to mom and the baby. A birth injury can also occur after birth from the failure to provide appropriate after care to the newborn baby or mom. Examples such as providing help breathing after birth; performing appropriate lab testing and monitoring blood pressure; providing blood transfusions, or appropriately monitoring the mother and the baby’s condition.

  • How frequently is this happening at the hospital?

I read a statistic that for every 1,000 babies being delivered, 27 suffer a preventable birth injury. That may not seem like a lot, but it is in the grand scheme of things. It definitely gives you something to think about. I know it made me want to continue reading and researching.

  • What are the causes of some of these birth injuries?

Some of the causes include forceps and vacuums used to forcibly remove the baby, complications of a c-section or other birth surgeries, medications like Pitocin or Cytotec that are given to mom before and during birth, and lack of oxygen during the delivery process. These are just a few of the common birth injuries happening in hospitals today.

  • What can labor and delivery nurses do in lowering your babies’ risk of birth injury?

First and foremost, they need to be certified and the hospital should have a policy on keeping them up to date in their field. The hospital should want their nurses to thrive, and continuing education is important. They should be monitoring both mom and the babies’ heartrates as well as vital signs, mom’s blood pressure, and contraction timing. Labor and delivery nurses should also be able to identify and assist with complications, help administer medications properly, closely monitor an induction of labor, and coach mother through labor and delivery. They need to not be afraid to call the charge nurse or doctor if anything seems out of place. We all hope nurses are trained and experienced and that this is the standard of care for all hospitals, but as I have come to find out, it just isn’t. This is really concerning. Ask questions. If I can tell anyone the best piece of advice, it is to be educated and ask questions. Read everything you can and prepare yourself, so you know the terminology.

  • Was your baby a victim of a preventable birth injury and what can you do?

For most parents, a birth injury is devastating. This doesn’t have to be the end, you have rights! Please contact Thomas & Wan, LLP immediately because we can help. Please call Ms. Wan or Ms. Thomas at 713-529-1177. We have almost 50 years of combined experience in medical malpractice cases. We are here to help.

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