As a mother, you carry your baby inside of you for nine whole months, which is nothing short of a miracle. During that time, you build an unbreakable bond that you will cherish forever.
If your baby is harmed as a result of a birth injury, it can be devastating, to say the least. Unfortunately, there are many ways that birth injuries can occur.
Here’s what you should know about birth injuries:
What’s Considered a Birth Injury
A birth injury can occur as a result of trauma either before, during, or directly after your baby is born. Some cases are more serious than others and have the potential to be life-threatening. These types of injuries may require ongoing care throughout the child’s life in response to the long-term consequences of a birth injury.
However, minor birth injuries can also occur, which may require mild care. Certain birth injuries may even heal on their own and the baby can grow up with few or no issues.
Note: Birth injuries are not the same as birth defects. Birth injuries often occur due to medical negligence, while birth defects are the result of a genetic predisposition.
Both Mothers and Babies Can Be Harmed By Medical Negligence
You may think that only the baby being born can endure a birth injury.
Unfortunately, it is also possible for mothers to be harmed before, during, or just after giving birth as a result of medical negligence.
Examples of Medical Negligence Leading to Birth Injuries
Most babies are delivered without any issues, and both the mother and child go on living life as planned. However, sometimes doctors, hospitals, or other medical professionals fail to properly perform their duties, which can have serious consequences for mothers and babies.
Some of the more common ways that birth injuries occur are due to:
- A failure to control excessive maternal blood loss post-delivery, and
- A failure to monitor the baby’s oxygen levels pre-and-post-delivery.
What To Do If You or Your Baby Sustains a Birth Injury
If Your Baby is Injured
If your baby is hurt as a result of medical negligence, you and/or your child’s other parent will need to file a lawsuit to recover damages. You can request both general and special damages on behalf of your child. General damages include expenses related to mental and physical pain and suffering, as well as the loss of enjoyment of life.
For instance, if your doctor decides to deliver your baby early without a valid reason to do so and your baby suffers brain damage as a result, you may be able to sue for the expenses related to paying for continuous rehabilitation and developmental care, in addition to pain and suffering as your child will endure the ongoing trauma of a physical and mental disability.
If the Mother is Injured
If you, the mother of your child, are injured due to medical negligence, you may be able to file a claim against those who harmed you.
For instance, if your doctor fails to acknowledge that you have high blood pressure before the delivery, this is a warning sign of preeclampsia. If you end up having a seizure during delivery (which often occurs as a result of preeclampsia), then you may be able to file a medical malpractice claim to recover damages for the harm the seizure caused.
The Basics of Wrongful Birth
Sadly, sometimes babies are conceived with birth defects. However, the significant advancements in modern medical technology make it possible for doctors to identify these defects and warn the parents early on in the pregnancy.
Some parents may choose to avoid or end such pregnancies. If a doctor fails to warn the parents of the baby’s defects early on, then the parents may be able to file suit.
These types of claims are typically based on:
- Negligent genetic testing prior to conception, or
- Negligently failing to detect mental or physical disorders in the early stages of pregnancy.
In a case like this, you may be able to recover the medical and educational therapy costs associated with the disability in addition to damages for emotional pain and suffering related to the birth and raising the child.
If your baby or your baby’s mother sustained an injury as a result of the birth, you may be able to recover compensation for your damages. It’s critical to your case that you reach out to a skilled birth injury attorney right away. Don’t hesitate to reach out to our office with any questions you may have.
Contact our experienced attorneys at Cherundolo Law Firm, PLLC today by calling (315) 544-3332 or by filling out our online contact form.