Birth Defects & Injuries
According to the March of Dimes about 120,000 babies born each year have a birth defect. Statistics show that approximately 27 of every 1,000 births in the United States results in a birth injury.
Doctors, nurses, therapists and hospitals are important in our society. But when their negligent cares causes a serious injury or wrongful death, they should be held accountable for the damage they have done the victim and the victim’s family.
Parents expect the best for their baby when it is born. But all too often, babies are born with problems that don’t match their parents’ expectations. Sometimes it is because the baby is born with an undiagnosed birth defect, and sometimes the baby is a victim of a birth injury that occurs during labor and delivery.
A birth defect is a health problem that inflicts your baby from the outset based on your child’s DNA. Examples of birth defects are down syndrome, a cleft palate, a heart murmur, or other health problems stemming from the structure of the child’s DNA.
A birth injury is a health problem that an infant is born with that is, in most cases, completely preventable. The most common types of preventable birth injuries are caused by:
- Pulling and/or twisting the infant improperly during the delivery period
- Improper handling and use of birth assisting tools, such as forceps or a vacuum extraction tool
- Administering the wrong amount or the wrong type of medication to the mother during pregnancy and during labor
- Failure to monitor the infant properly for distress, including failure to regularly monitor fetal heartbeat
- Failure to schedule and perform an emergency cesarean surgery (C-section)
- Anoxia (deprived of oxygen)
- Failure to diagnose fetal abnormality
- Failure to recognize and treat early onset of infant conditions
- Improper labor and delivery care
- Improper screening and diagnostic testing
- Improper prenatal care
- Medication or drug side effects
Types of injuries caused by medical negligence at birth may include:
- Brain damage
- Cerebral Palsy
- Down’s Syndrome
- Erbs Palsy
- Motor function damage
- Spina Bifida
- Wrongful death
At SL Chapman Law we understand the pain that families face when coping with permanent, life-altering birth injuries and the frustration of knowing they could have been prevented. The physical, emotional, and financial strain of birth defects impacts everyone in a family for their whole life.
Birth injuries can result in profound physical and developmental defects and, in the worst cases, death of a newborn. Our attorneys strive to compensate parents for the financial burden of caring for a child with special physical, medical or emotional needs, or the heartbreak of losing a child.
The birth injury lawyers at SL Chapman investigate these cases throughout the United States. We help families bring lawsuits for children who were born with injuries resulting from dangerous drugs, pharmaceuticals, and medical malpractice. If you believe that your child’s birth injury was caused by a medication or drug that you took during pregnancy, or a doctor’s negligence, contact our office immediately.
An experienced birth injury lawyer should be consulted if your infant has suffered a birth trauma and you suspect those injuries were caused by medical negligence. The attorney should be consulted immediately after birth, even if the extent of the injuries and damages are not yet known. Appropriate discovery is essential to knowing whether there is a case, and to knowing what the likely costs will be that are associated with any permanent injury. Our medical malpractice attorneys have trial experience and a network of experts who help us prove our cases. Contact our medical malpractice law firm today at 800-550-2106 for a free legal consultation.
Meconium Aspiration Syndrome
There are many different types of birth injuries that our birth injury lawyers see in the cases we handle. Many of these cases were preventable and can be life-shattering for families. After nine months of waiting and preparing for the birth of their child, there can be nothing more devastating for parents to hear that their newborn has suffered a birth injury. If your child has suffered injuries during labor or delivery due to medical negligence, contact SL Chapman LLC today.
One of the common preventable errors that infants suffer is meconium aspiration syndrome (MAS). When a baby is in its mother’s womb, it does not breathe oxygen through the lungs. This is because the baby is totally surrounded by amniotic fluid. Oxygen is delivered to the baby through the umbilical cord.
As the baby develops, it will take what is often referred to as practice breaths. These breaths draw clean amniotic fluid into the baby’s lungs, however, there is no harm to the baby at all.
Just before or during the baby’s birth, the baby may excrete feces into the amniotic fluid. This is referred to as meconium. If the baby inhales or aspirates the meconium, the meconium can become trapped in the airways and the baby may not be able to breathe upon delivery.
MAS occurs in about 11 percent of all births. In most cases, medical professionals will recognize this is happening and will quickly take the steps to treat it. But if they fail to recognize the baby is in distress and the meconium is not removed, the infant can be left with brain damage, lung damage, and permanent hearing loss.
Prompt treatment of meconium aspiration is not difficult since the signs of MAS are easily identifiable. Treatment should begin even before the baby comes fully out of the birth canal. Medical staff should clear the baby’s airway, making sure the baby is receiving enough oxygen. Treatment for or to prevent airway infections should also be administered. In severe cases, the medical team can use an extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) machine, which acts as an artificial heart and lung system and makes sure the baby is receiving enough oxygenated blood flow.
There are some factors that indicate that a baby may be more at risk for meconium aspiration, increasing the possibility that the baby will release meconium and breathe it in during delivery:
- The baby was born past 40 weeks gestation
- The mother had a uterine infection
- The baby experienced some type of distress during delivery
Contact Our Birth Injury Law Firm Today
If your baby suffered meconium aspiration syndrome during delivery – or any other birth injuries – do not delay in contacting SL Chapman LLC to find out what legal recourse you may have against the medical professionals and/or facility that negligently allowed your child to suffer harm. Call our office today to schedule a free and confidential case evaluation and find out how a birth injury lawyer from our firm can help get you the financial justice your family deserves.