Giving birth to a child should be a joyous experience for parents–though a simultaneously exhausting one for the mother. Some deliveries, however, result in birth injuries. On average, 7 out of every 1,000 babies in the U.S. suffer a birth injury, often as a result of poor use of instruments or improper handling of a newborn by doctors or other medical staff.
While many of these injuries tend to be minor, and the child may quickly recover, some injuries can be devastating and require long-term or even lifelong treatment and care. When this happens, the parents must get representation from a Washington, DC Birth Injury Lawyer. Read on to learn why.
What Are Common Birth Injuries?
Fortunately, we live in a day and age of technology that can help determine whether a delivery may prove difficult. In those cases, a Cesarean section is often recommended to reduce the likelihood of injury to both the child and the mother. But there are still cases where injuries occur. Some of the more common birth injuries include:
- Delivery injuries such as bruises, fractures, and lacerations caused by the use of a vacuum or forceps during delivery
- Brain-related injuries such as cerebral palsy and hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy caused by oxygen deprivation
- Muscle-related injuries such as brachial plexus, Erb’s palsy, Klumpke’s palsy, and shoulder dystocia
- Injuries passed on from the mother or through infection, such as spina bifida, anemia, and folic acid deficiency
While some delivery injuries are less severe and heal relatively quickly, brain- and muscle-related injuries can cause severe problems for the baby at birth that are long term.
What’s the Difference Between a Birth Injury and Birth Defect?
Delivering a baby is no easy task. That said, doctors and other medical personnel are still responsible for making sure the baby is delivered without injury caused by medical malpractice.
While birth defects are a result of your child’s DNA and potentially other external factors (medicines, drugs, smoking, etc.), birth injuries are classified as trauma that is nearly entirely preventable. These include instances such as:
- Improper handling and/or use of birth-assisting tools
- Improper medication administered to the mother
- Improper pulling and twisting of the infant during delivery
- Failure to recognize the need for and perform an emergency C-section
- Failure to recognize infant distress
What to Do If Your Baby Suffers a Birth Injury
First and foremost, ensure that the baby and the delivering mother receive all the medical care they need–everything else is secondary at that point. Once that’s been accomplished, keep a running log of signs and symptoms that something may not be right; sometimes this comes as a gut feeling or a sense that something seems off during the delivery; other times it’s clear from how the child is behaving–cognitive issues, gross motor skill problems, developmental or growth delays.
If you’re noticing and tracking a distressing pattern, contact your pediatrician immediately so a diagnosis can be made. Keep organized paperwork of all medical records, test results, doctors’ visits, and diagnoses.
If you feel that the birth injury is the result of malpractice, you’ll want to contact the Washington, DC Birth Injury Lawyers at The Lapidus Law Firm as soon as possible. We’ll stand with you every step of the way, consulting with both medical and legal representatives from the hospital.
The Washington, DC Birth Injury Lawyers will offer compassion and understanding regarding your situation. The attorneys know that birth injuries that require long-term care will result in piles of exorbitant medical bills, insurance hassles, and even more emotional stress that can be overwhelming. Let The Lapidus Law Firm help you.
Washington, DC Birth Injury Lawyers
If you’re dealing with the difficulty of a birth injury, call The Lapidus Law Firm at (202) 785-5111 to set up a free, no-obligation consultation. If we determine that you have a case for medical malpractice, we’ll do the heavy lifting from there.
While no attorney can ethically promise a settlement, know that our experienced Washington, DC Birth Injury Lawyers will go above and beyond to get you justice and the help you’ll need to take care of medical bills and treatment. WE ARE HERE FOR YOU!