How do I know if negligence is a possible cause of my child’s injuries?
Serious injury to a newborn baby as the result of medical negligence or malpractice by a doctor or nurse or other health care provider can occur in the following circumstances:
- Not responding to distress shown by changes in the baby’s heartbeat on a fetal monitor.
- Encouraging the mother to try a Vaginal Birth After Cesarean section (rather than a repeat C-section) — called a VBAC — when the hospital is not adequately equipped to have an emergency C-section if the mother’s uterus ruptures during the VBAC labor.
- Allowing the pregnancy to go beyond 41 weeks without proper testing, or 42 weeks in any event.
- Failing to act on changes in the mother’s condition during pregnancy, especially gestational diabetes (diabetes that starts in pregnancy) or pregnancy-induced hypertension (also known as pre-eclampsia).
- Causing or failing to respond to the umbilical cord being entrapped or compressed.
- Misuse of a vacuum extractor or forceps.
- Misuse of the labor-stimulating drug Pitocin (Oxytocin).
- Delay in ordering or performing a C-section (Caesarean section).
- Using the wrong maneuvers to deliver a baby whose shoulder has become stuck in the birth canal.
- Poor resuscitation and newborn care after birth.
- Failing to aggressively treat jaundice in a newborn.
This lists only the most common circumstances. Other potential situations exist in which sub-standard treatment may have caused serious injury to a child.
If a family member has suffered a serious, permanent injury related to childbirth, you may want to talk to a lawyer. We provide free consultations to help determine if you have a valid medical negligence case that should be pursued. If you have already consulted with another lawyer or are in the process of doing so, we can offer information about how to evaluate whether you have obtained the right lawyer for your case.