Despite advances in prenatal care and medical technologies, birth injuries still occur during labor and after delivery.
We put a lot of trust into doctors, nurses and other medical professionals. What happens when that trust is broken? It can be particularly devastating when a newborn baby is the one affected by this, and left to endure the pain and suffering of someone else’s negligence.
When Children Are Injured At Birth
A birth injury sustained by an infant can often result from failure to diagnose or treat prenatal, labor and/or delivery issues.
According to the CDC, birth injuries occur in every 8 out of 1,000 live births.
While the kinds of birth injury sustained by an infant or mother are various, the result is often the same: pain, suffering and countless medical bills. Some injuries can be quickly recovered from, while others may permanently alter the quality of life of both mother and child. Depending on the type of birth injury, the total lifetime costs of treatment can be much more than the average family can afford.
If you suspect medical malpractice was a factor in your child’s birth injury, the attorneys at The Oshman Firm want to hear from you. For over 35 years, we have successfully represented families in the State of New York, as well as nationwide. Let us help you!
Birth Injury Attorneys
We trust medical professionals to be skilled and flexible enough to handle the unexpected demands of the delivery room. When birth trauma and injuries to your baby are caused by the mistakes of doctors and physicians, the law allows those at-fault to be held accountable for damages to you and your family. An experienced birth injury attorney can help you exercise your legal rights to compensation.
If you have been the victim of a birth injury, an experienced medical malpractice attorney will be able to inform you of your legal options.
The Oshman Firm, Medical Malpractice Lawyers in New York
For over 35 years, the law firm of The Oshman Firm has successfully represented New Yorkers and Americans nationwide in their legal matters. We’ve seen the devastation and long-term trauma birth injuries can cause.
Birth injury cases are complex, and we will tirelessly fight the wrong-doing and recklessness that has impacted your lives.
If you’re ready to speak to an attorney today, contact us by calling (800) 400-8182. We offer a no-cost, no obligation consultation to better asses your claim, and help you move forward. We have seen the devastating and long-term trauma birth injuries can cause. We want to be your advocates, and fight for your child’s rights.
How Birth Injuries Occur
Though medical malpractice or negligence can be responsible for your child’s birth injury, human error is not always to blame. The only way to be certain the injury was caused by a person’s mistake or error is to look for the evidence to prove it. An experienced birth injury attorney can help you gather the appropriate documents, medical records and witness testimonies needed to build a strong case.
A doctor’s failure to diagnose can lead to a variety of traumatic birth events, including shoulder dystocia or perinatal asphyxia, improper execution of a certain technique or failure to order a C-section. A defective product (i.e. a dangerous prescription drug) can also be responsible for an injury.
Though some birth injuries are congenital, or develop in utero because of genetics, your doctor could be at fault if he or she failed to diagnose the issue or provide treatment options.
Common Birth Injuries
Birth injuries can occur due to a doctor’s, nurse’s or medical staff’s failure to diagnose or treat prenatal, labor and/or delivery complications. The most common birth injuries include:
Anoxia is a neurological condition that can stem from a birth injury, traumatic brain injury, exposure to toxins, surgical error, anesthesia error or carbon monoxide poisoning. Anoxia happens when the brain is completely deprived of oxygen, and can produce the following symptoms: inattentiveness, reduced judgment, dizziness, reduced vision, sweating, seizures and spasms.
Bone fractures are common, and occur when a bone in the body breaks. Generally caused from trauma or force to the bone, a myriad of fractures can take place, including clavicle fractures, elbow fractures, spinal fractures, leg fractures, skull fractures, jaw fractures and hairline fractures. The severity of the injury, or fracture, will determine the treatment needed to mend the bone.
A brain injury is the common result of sudden impact to the head. Depending on the force of the impact, the injury can be classified as “traumatic.” A brain injury is usually caused from force to the head, the head striking an object or the brain undergoing violent movement. The Centers for Disease Control revealed that traumatic brain injuries are a major cause of death and disability in the United States.
A disorder that affects a person’s control of movement, different types of cerebral palsy exist, including spastic, athetoid and ataxic. This condition generally appears within the first few years of life, and can cause muscles in the arms and legs to become stiff. Depending on the individual’s own needs, physical therapy, drug therapy or surgery may be needed. There is no known cure for cerebral palsy.
Known for causing blood to pool from damaged blood vessels between the skull and inner layers of the skin, cephalohematoma occurs in the infant’s skull bone, and is generally caused due to birth injuries. Because it is internal, symptoms of the condition can be difficult to see, but may include anemia, infection, jaundice and unnatural bulges on the infant’s head.
Also known as Erb-Duchenne palsy, Erb’s palsy is a shoulder dystocia injury that is both common and serious. This condition occurs when the nerves in the shoulder are injured, affecting the spinal cord, arms and hands. Erb’s palsy does not involve damage to the brain, but does almost instantly surface after birth, during which the infant is unable to move the hand or arm on one side of the body. Depending on each individual case, the condition can subside within a few months or worsen.
During this condition, the infant loses muscle movement in the face, generally due to pressure on the facial nerve just before or at the time of birth. Though facial paralysis is mostly noticeable when the infant cries, there are other symptoms, such as when eyelids may not close, the lower face appears uneven and uneven movement of the mouth. In some cases, surgery is needed as well as special therapy.
Fetal lacerations occur during caesarian-section deliveries, and are generally the result of a procedure performed improperly. Common lacerations often include nicks and cuts from scalpels, forceps and other instruments used during delivery. Though fetal lacerations are easily treated, some may require stiches, or in the most traumatic cases, reconstructive surgery.
This condition occurs when the brain receives a reduced amount of oxygen while still maintaining an adequate supply of blood. Generally related to Anoxia, Hypoxia can also transpire during a birth injury, surgical error, anesthesia error, carbon monoxide poisoning or traumatic brain injury. Mild symptoms can often include sweating, dizziness, reduced vision and sleepiness, while more severe symptoms range from comas, seizures or brain cell death.
When an infant does not breathe normally before, during or after birth, perinatal asphyxia is known to occur. In this condition, the child is generally born quietly, while other symptoms can include the child being born blue, limp or suffering from rapid breathing. Though mild, there is a risk of brain damage as well as intellectual disability, cerebral palsy and seizures.
Persistent Pulmonary Hypertension
A life-threatening condition, persistent pulmonary hypertension refers to high blood pressure. During persistent pulmonary hypertension, an infant’s blood circulates differently while in the uterus. Specifically, blood is forced away from the lungs, which decreases the baby’s supply of oxygen. Symptoms can include rapid breathing, a blue color of the lips, pale coloring, decreased urine output and swelling.
Often the consequence of a head, neck or back injury, the vertebrate become fractured or dislocated during a spinal cord injury. Physical impairment is generally a direct result of a spinal cord injury, and damages tend to be irreversible. Secondary complications can also be common, such as extreme pain, heart problems, bladder dysfunction, pressure sores and scoliosis.
When a person dies as a direct result of another person’s negligence or carelessness, the act of wrongful death occurs. A wrongful death can occur from failure to diagnose, a misdiagnosis, prescription error, surgical error or birth injury. If you plan on filing a wrongful death claim, seek a professional attorney to assist you with the process, as there are many factors involved, including a statute of limitations.
If your infant experienced one of the conditions detailed above during or after birth, a birth injury may have taken place. To find out if this injury could have been the result of negligence, contact a medical malpractice attorney today.
Are All Birth Injuries Medical Malpractice?
Many traumatic birth events, such as shoulder dystocia, occur through a doctor’s failure to diagnosis, improper execution of a technique, or failure to order a C-section. A defective product, like a dangerous prescription drug, can also can be responsible for a birth injury.
Some birth defects are congenital, meaning they occurred while the fetus was developing as a result of that child’s genes. While this is not directly considered medical malpractice, if your doctor failed to diagnosis or provide treatment options, this would be considered malpractice.
The only way to truly discover if the birth injury was caused by a mistake on the doctor or medical staff’s part is to gather all the evidence to prove it. An experienced birth injury attorney can help you gather the documents, medical records, and witness testimony to build a strong case that wins the compensation you need.
How The Oshman Firm Can Help Your Birth Injury Case
When you contact The Oshman Firm, we will listen to your experience and provide valuable feedback on whether or not you have a case.
To help us better decipher this, be sure to gather all the medical documents you can beforehand.
About Birth Injury Cases
Once we understand the details, your case moves into the pre-litigation process. During this phase, we gather all the necessary documentation and testimony to present the strongest case possible. We will review every detail of your case and keep you informed of our findings. After this, we can propose a settlement amount to the defense. In the event that a settlement amount cannot be agreed to, the process moves onto the litigation phase.
Litigation is often the longest part of the lawsuit process. A formal complaint must be filed with the defendant and their legal team. This is also known as the discovery stage, in which the defense has the right to review any and all evidence being presented for your case. Most defendants choose to settle before the case goes to trial. However, in the event that a settlement still cannot be reached, a trial date will be set. The defense will have the opportunity to agree to the settlement until the very last week of trial.
This process can last several months, or even years, but we will be there to support you every step of the way.
Past Birth Injury Cases and Settlements
The law firm of The Oshman Firm has a proven track record of winning settlements and verdicts for our clients. Our past medical malpractice victories include:
- $2,625,000 Erb’s palsy settlement – a mother with gestational diabetes was forced to vaginally delivery her 9lb 6oz baby, who subsequently became stuck behind the cervix. Instead of ordering a C-section, the doctor used an improper delivery technique that resulted in a brachial plexus injury (Erb’s palsy) to the infant.
- $10,500,000 Cerebral palsy case – this was a trial case of a child who suffered severe brain damage as a result of the doctor’s failure to provide proper prenatal treatment for a mother with a high-risk pregnancy.
- $42,000,000 Cerebral palsy settlement – for a mother whose doctor failed to monitor her progress during labor, which resulted in a cerebral palsy birth injury.
If your infant has suffered a birth injury, medical malpractice or negligence could be to blame. Birth injury claims can be challenging and expensive, due to the medical records, witness statements and expert testimonies that are often necessary to collect. It may be difficult to trust in a professional again, but having an attorney on your side could significantly benefit your and your family’s future.
Contact a New York Birth Injury Attorney
The attorneys at The Oshman Firm have decades of combined legal experience assisting mothers and families who have been affected by the devastating consequences of birth injuries. Though compensation cannot undo the pain you and your child have endured, a settlement could assist with medical bills, treatment, missed wages and special therapy sessions.
Contact us today by calling (800) 400-8182 for a no-cost, no-obligation consultation. Let us be your advocates, and help you move on with your life.