There is a big difference between congenital birth defects and birth injury. A birth injury, also called a birth trauma, is a physical injury to an infant that occurs during labor. While birth injuries are not terribly common, when they do happen the results can impact your child forever.
Birth injuries are complicated; not only in terms of the damage caused, but also in how the actual injury was allowed to happen. Pregnancy, from inception to delivery, often involves a large number of medical professionals, all of whom must share appropriate information at important stages throughout. From primary care physicians and OBGYN’s to nurses and midwives, everyone must function as a team to ensure the health of your child.
Kinds of negligence
Childbirth is a delicate process from a medical standpoint – though mothers in labor might find it otherwise. There are any number of problems that can arise in an instant, and the presence of a competent medical professional can be invaluable. Some of the more common types of birth injuries can include:
- Prenatal negligence – when screening or testing for certain conditions is omitted or improperly administered
- Labor and delivery negligence – when late-stage monitoring is not used or a healthcare worker fails to notice signs of infant distress
- Negligent use of delivery tools – when a vacuum or forceps causes physical harm to an infant when used improperly or in an untimely manner
- Postpartum negligence – when an appropriate standard of care is not administered to a vulnerable infant, resulting in severe injury or death
Most types of birth injuries are avoidable, which is all the more devastating to a parent left with a permanently disabled child. Birth injuries can be immediately apparent or take several months to manifest symptoms. In severe cases, infant death can result from improper care.
Birth injuries can and do result in lifelong conditions, including Cerebral Palsy, brachial plexus injury, and Klumpke’s palsy to name but a few. Some of these conditions require lifelong medical care and support, and can be emotionally and psychologically devastating to a family.
If your family has been affected by a birth injury, you may be entitled to compensation for medical bills. Our experienced birth injury attorneys and registered nurses can be your family’s advocate. If you think you have a case, please contact Crandall & Pera Law for a free consultation in one of our Ohio or Kentucky office locations.