By Janet G. Abaray, Burg Simpson Shareholder
IF YOUR CHILD HAS SUSTAINED A BIRTH INJURY
If your child has sustained a birth injury, you probably have a lot of questions regarding the injury and how it was caused. In this article, we hope to provide information that will answer some of your questions.
What does “birth injury” or “birth trauma” mean and how often does it happen?
A birth injury or birth trauma refers to any injury sustained by the baby during the process of labor and delivery. Scientific studies have shown that birth injuries are surprisingly common. For example, a 2003 study estimated 29 out of every 1000 newborns sustained birth injuries. The severity of birth injuries also varies. Some injuries are mild and resolve quickly. Others are severe or may last a lifetime. The rate of severe birth injuries has been reported as much lower than birth injuries generally, occurring in 4.5 out of every 1000 newborns.
My child had a birth injury. Does that mean that the doctor did something wrong?
Just because your child sustained a birth injury does not necessarily mean that your doctor did something wrong. The process of labor and delivery is stressful on the baby, and birth injuries can occur even if you received the best possible medical care. For example, bruising of the baby’s face can occur just from the pressures of passing through the birth canal. Although most birth injuries occur despite great medical care, sometimes birth injuries are the result of medical malpractice. For example, birth injuries can occur when the mother and baby are not monitored properly or when a harmful medication is unnecessarily administered.
Are there any birth injuries that are more likely to be due to malpractice than others?
Yes. Although almost all birth injuries can occur even with the best of care, the following birth injuries are associated with malpractice more than others:
- Hypoxia (oxygen deprivation)
- Brachial plexus injuries
- Forceps injuries
- Shoulder dystocia
- Cerebral Palsy
- Skull fractures
What do I do if I suspect that my baby’s injury was due to medical malpractice?
Generally, medical malpractice occurs whenever a physician’s negligence results in damage or harm to the patient. Although that concept seems straight forward, medical malpractice law can be very complex and it varies from state to state. Therefore, the best answer to this question is: if you feel that your baby was injured due to the fault of a medical professional, consult a medical malpractice attorney. A medical malpractice attorney can help you determine whether malpractice occurred and, if it has, help you seek the recovery that you and your baby deserve.
CONTACT OUR MEDICAL MALPRACTICE LAWYERS TODAY
If your child sustained a birth injury and you suspect malpractice, contact Burg Simpson today. Our award-winning, compassionate attorneys welcome the opportunity to discuss your potential claim.
BURG SIMPSON OHIO
Burg Simpson Ohio is located in Cincinnati. Our attorneys have represented clients in the Greater Cincinnati / Northern Kentucky region for decades, as well as clients statewide and nationwide. With additional Burg Simpson offices located in Colorado, Wyoming, Arizona, and New Mexico, Burg Simpson Ohio provides a nationwide network of resources to represent you at the highest level of commitment and professionalism.
Our Cincinnati, Ohio trial team members are licensed in the following states:
- Janet Abaray (Ohio)
- Melanie Bailey (Ohio and Kentucky)
- David Harman (Ohio)
- Kenneth Daly (Ohio and Kentucky)
- Jessica Powell (Kentucky)
We also welcome the opportunity to represent clients nationwide with the support of co-counsel.