FindLaw KnowledgeBasePublished: 2013-01-10
Any parent-to-be knows that when the child arrives, his or her entire life will be changing. It can be an exciting time, filled with anticipation of the arrival. Often the nine months offers just enough time to get everything ready by the time the baby is born. Each doctor’s appointment allows parents the opportunity to check the baby’s health and progress. When it becomes time for delivery, parents hope that everything goes exactly according to plan.
However, complications may arise, and this may lead to serious consequences for the mother and child. Many birth injuries arise because of the actions of the doctors present in the delivery room. The injuries may result in medical malpractice cases against the physician.
The brachial plexus is one potential area of concern for doctors. It is a bundle of nerves that begins at the base of the neck. The nerves run from the neck, through the shoulders, arms and hands. During difficult deliveries, the nerves can become stretched out due to the actions of the medical professionals that are assisting with the birth.
This is most common when the child’s top shoulder gets wedged in the birth canal, and the doctor tries to pull the child out. If too much force is used, serious injuries may result. Unfortunately, it may not be able to be immediately determined if a brachial plexus injury is a short-term or long-term injury until the child begins to develop.
The long-term problems that may result from brachial plexus injuries include complications with muscle movements, scoliosis or even a discrepancy in limb growth. This could result in noticeable physical differences if the injury is extremely severe.
Doctors are trained not to pull children when they are stuck during the birth in order to prevent these dangerous injuries from occurring. When complications arise, they may panic, and forget this training. The delivery room can be a chaotic place, and it can be difficult for even experienced doctors to follow all procedures when there are problems.
Birth injuries may require life-long care, which can be very costly. Each case is different and will require a careful review of the situation to determine if the actions of the medical professionals led to the injuries that are present.
If your child suffers from brachial plexus or any other birth injury that was caused by a physician’s negligence, speak to an experienced medical malpractice attorney in your area to understand the options that are available to you. It is important to have someone on your side that is committed to helping you throughout this process.