As mothers prepare for a new baby, they hope for a delivery without complications, and they expect healthcare providers to act responsibly and care for their child’s well-being. Unfortunately, some doctors and nurses can make critical mistakes that could impact your child’s development. These medical mistakes could fall under malpractice, and your family may be able to receive compensation for any injuries that could affect your child.
At Cellino & Barnes, our attorneys understand the physical and emotional strain a birth injury can place on a child’s family. These accidents, which occur in the delivery room, can leave your child with long-lasting injuries which often affect brain development.
How many children suffer birth injuries?
Millions of children are born with birth injuries every year, some of which are the result of medical negligence. Today’s birth injury statistics estimate that 6 to 10 children of every 1,000 delivered at a hospital are born with a birth injury. That adds-up to nearly 30,000 injuries each year – or three per hour.
Thousands of these deliveries can injure the mother or child; and most can be avoided with proper oversight by a competent medical team. Researchers believe that roughly half of all birth injuries can be avoided by proper planning for obstetrical risk factors.
In many cases, it may take months or even years for parents to begin noticing a developmental delay. A parent may notice that my child is not meeting milestones, or my child is missing milestones altogether.
Why Is My Child Not Meeting Milestones?
There are several different kinds of birth injuries that can affect the development of your child’s brain. These injuries include:
- Cerebral Palsy (C.P.) – Cerebral Palsy, also known as ‘CP,’ is a neurological disorder that is caused by a brain injury, often suffered at birth. Cerebral Palsy usually impacts a child’s ability to move, and it can impair muscle coordination. It can also impact other motor skills and oral functions. Learn more about Cerebral Palsy and the types of CP here.
Why does my child have Cerebral Palsy? What causes Cerebral Palsy?
Although some children can develop Cerebral Palsy after birth, many cases are a direct result of a brain injury that occurred at birth or immediately after delivery.
- Erb’s Palsy, or Brachial Plexus Injury (BPI) – Erb’s Palsy is commonly mistaken for Cerebral Palsy, but it is a unique form of nerve damage. Erb’s Palsy affects the movement of a child’s upper arm, and it can also impact movement and rotation of the lower arm. Read more about Erb’s Palsy and treatment methods here.
Why does my child have Erb’s Palsy? What causes Erb’s Palsy?
The cause of Erb’s Palsy can vary, but it is most commonly associated with a difficult child birth, and negligent delivery procedures.
- Hypoxic Encephalopathy (HIE) – Another type of brain injury, Hypoxic Encephalopathy is caused by oxygen deprivation to the brain, and it is one of the leading causes of infant death. Surviving children can experience developmental delays, epilepsy, motor skills impairments, and cognitive damages. Children with Hypoxic Encephalopathy could require long-term care, rehabilitation, or even special accommodations for the rest of their lives.
Why does my child have HIE? What causes Hypoxic Encephalopathy?
These injuries can affect premature infants, but they are more commonly associated with full-term babies. In most cases, a doctor can identify potential problems before they affect your child, but medical errors can be common in some delivery rooms. HIE can be caused by placental trauma, umbilical cord complications, or excessive maternal anesthesia.
- Broken Bones – Most commonly associated with difficult deliveries, a negligent doctor can accidentally trigger an accident at childbirth. An infant’s bones are still developing at birth, and they are not as strong as the bones in toddlers or other young children; and the bones can be easily manipulated or broken. In some cases, the bone will heal on its own with proper treatments, but your child could develop impairments in mobility or a decreased range of motion as a result.
- Spinal Cord Injuries – Spinal cord injuries at birth can be extremely serious, and they can affect your child for life. Often severe, these injuries typically require serious misconduct by doctors or nurses in a delivery room.
- Facial Paralysis – Paralysis of the face, either fully or partially, can occur after some deliveries. If doctors are not careful handling your baby in the delivery room, your child’s facial nerve can be temporarily or permanently damaged. This type of paralysis is most noticeable when an infant cries.
- Injuries from Forceps and Vacuum Extractors – When the birth is not progressing during labor, a doctor may sometimes use these devices to help deliver the baby. This is sometimes called an assisted delivery, and this technique can be very risky. Some of the injuries that may occur as a result of this type of delivery include:
- Bone fractures
- Brain damage
- Cerebral Palsy
If your child has experienced any of these injuries or symptoms, your family may be entitled to significant compensation that could help your child live more comfortably for years to come.
The Cerebral Palsy lawyers at Cellino & Barnes have been helping mothers and children with birth injuries for over 50 years. Working as a team, some of our Cerebral Palsy attorneys are former doctors with a strong knowledge of current medicinal operations, treatments and the laws and ethics that healthcare professionals are required to abide by.
If you believe your child may have been injured at birth, contact a Cerebral Palsy attorney at Cellino & Barnes for a FREE case evaluation.
Many birth injuries, including cerebral palsy (C.P.) and hypoxic encephalopathy, are often caused by the negligence of a doctor or a nurse in the delivery room, and the child’s family may be entitled to significant compensation. This compensation could help families with the costs of:
- Doctor and hospital visits
- Medical treatments
- Home accommodations
- Special education costs
- Pan & Suffering
- Physical therapy
- And more…
Upon contacting an experienced encephalopathy attorney at Cellino & Barnes, our team will fully investigate your case and identify those responsible for your child’s developmental delay or brain injury. A birth injury lawsuit can be filed against negligent healthcare providers, or a hospital in which the incident occurred.
As a courtesy to our clients, our case evaluations are FREE, and with our No Fee Guarantee, you won’t pay a fee unless our encephalopathy lawyers win your case. Contact our team of experienced birth injury attorneys today for your FREE case evaluation to learn how a legal claim could help you and your child in your unique situation.