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Birth injuries and medical negligence

Birth Injuries – Common Causes, Prevention, and Compensation Options: According to the CDC (Center for Disease Control), 7 out of 1000 babies in the US suffer from birth injuries. And while some of these injuries have a genetic factor, there are cases when the injury occurred due to medical negligence.

For instance, fractured collar bones happen in 15 out of 1,000 live births. Also, around 12,000 babies per year suffer from Erb’s palsy, which affects the mobility of the arm, shoulder, and hand. And between 1 and 4 newborns in 1000 can suffer from brain damage.

As a future parent, these stats can be scary, but it does help to know the most common causes and what you can do to prevent anything bad from happening to your baby. Also, if the worst scenario comes to pass and your baby is injured during birth, you need to know how to demand compensation in order to cover any additional medical bills.

The Main Causes that Lead to Birth Injuries

Many things can go wrong during childbirth, but when scientists put the data together, these are the most common causes that stood out:

Prolonged labor: Around 8% of women experience prolonged labor, which can cause nerve or muscle damage to infants due to difficulties in moving through the birth canal. This usually happens because of a high body mass index or significant weight gain during pregnancy.

Oxygen deprivation: Lack of oxygen at birth can lead to brain damage and severe conditions like cerebral palsy.

Delivery tools used the wrong way: Incorrect use of tools like vacuum extractors or forceps can harm infants during delivery and potentially result in medical malpractice.

Issues during monitorization and delivery: Doctors may fail to detect severe maternal and fetal complications before childbirth, increasing the risk of injury for both mother and child.

Keep in mind that unless you witness the injury happening, it may be difficult to tell that something is wrong immediately after birth. It usually takes around 1 to 2 years for children to show clear signs and symptoms of birth injuries. So pay attention to anything that seems out of the ordinary during the child’s first months of life.

Receiving Compensation

If you suspect that your child suffered an injury during childbirth due to medical error, there are steps you can take to seek compensation.

Start by gathering all the medical documents related to the childbirth experience, including prenatal care files, delivery notes, and medical bills. Next, consult with attorneys specializing in birth injuries and medical malpractice to understand your options for legal recourse.

Once you know you have a case, submit a complaint to the relevant medical authority in your state. Also, file a claim with the hospital or healthcare provider’s liability insurance company.

Lastly, wait for the insurance company’s response and prepare yourself for negotiations and potentially a lawsuit in case of dispute resolution failures.

Keep in mind that birth injury cases can be complex and may require experts in medicine and law to provide evidence that supports your claim of medical malpractice. Seeking the assistance of professionals may increase your likelihood of success with a claim or preferred mediation solutions instead of going through legal proceedings.

Is There Any Way to Prevent Birth Injuries?

As a future parent, there are a few things you can do to reduce the likelihood of your baby suffering a birth injury.

For instance, it helps to stay informed about common birth injuries, such as cerebral palsy and Erb’s palsy, and ask your doctor(s) about these scenarios. Also, make sure to communicate your concerns and doubts to your healthcare provider.

Early proper prenatal care and staying healthy throughout pregnancy can also improve the chances of a successful delivery experience.

Lastly, knowing your birthing plan (home versus hospital; natural childbirth versus inducing labor) and ensuring that everything is in place for labor are essential preventive measures regarding any complications during the childbirth experience.

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