Every year, thousands of newborns sustain injuries during the birth process that leave them with lasting medical conditions and disabilities. In many cases, these injuries are the result of carelessness or negligence on the part of physicians, nurses, hospital staff, or medical equipment providers.
When newborns are injured due to a preventable medical malpractice accident, significant financial resources are often required to ensure that their medical needs are met and to establish the necessary care. Because birth injuries can be extremely complicated, anyone who suspects that their child was injured because of an accident or mistake that occurred during birth should discuss their options with one of the experienced Georgia birth injury attorneys of Goldstein Hayes & Lina, P.C. as soon as possible.
Some of the more common birth injuries that often occur due to the negligence of medical professionals include the following:
Bone Fractures – Often, a difficult delivery results in broken bones in many newborns. One of the most commonly fractured bones is the clavicle, also known as the collar bone. While these injuries may occur due to natural forces involved in the birthing process, they can also result because a medical professional used too much pressure when handling a newborn or when using medical instruments. In addition, hospitals or medical professionals may be held liable if they fail to diagnose a broken bone in a newborn and that failure to diagnose caused further injury.
Brachial Plexus Injuries – The brachial plexus is a bundle of nerves that is responsible for sending signals between the spine and the shoulder, arm, and hand. These injuries generally manifest as weakness or lack of mobility in the arm or hand of a newborn. The kinds of medical errors that could lead to a brachial plexus injury include failure to prevent a newborn’s shoulder from lodging against the mother’s pelvic bone, excessive force used when attempting to dislodge a newborn’s shoulder, misuse of forceps or other medical instruments, or failure to anticipate a foreseeable breech birth.
Cerebral Palsy – Cerebral palsy is a serious condition that has been connected to an infant not receiving enough oxygen during childbirth. The condition can manifest in a number of different ways, including neurological conditions that affect a person’s movement and muscle coordination. Some of the forms of medical malpractice that have the potential to cause oxygen deprivation and cerebral palsy include failure to diagnose medical conditions in the mother, failure to perform or unreasonable delay in performing a cesarean section, improper use of medical instruments, and failing to diagnose a prolapsed umbilical cord.
Facial paralysis – Sometimes, medical malpractice can result in damage to the nerves in a newborn’s face, causing partial or complete paralysis of part of the facial. This condition can often be caused by misuse of instruments or excessive force being used during birth.