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Birth Injuries

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Why They Happen and How They Impact a Family

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Birth Injuries

  1. 1. BIRTH INJURIES Why They Happen and How They Impact a Family chhlaw.com
  2. 2. What is a Birth Injury? A birth injury is any damage to a newborn caused by an adverse event before, during or after labor. These adverse events might be related to several factors, many of which we’ll discuss in the pages that follow. CALL US AT: 312-346-8700 | chhlaw.com
  3. 3. Examples of Birth Injuries Brain damage Cerebral palsy Fractured bones Erb’s palsy Soft tissue damage Breathing problems CALL US AT: 312-346-8700 | chhlaw.com
  4. 4. A Distinction from Birth Defects The term birth injury is not synonymous with birth defect. Birth defects are associated with the health of the fetus prior to birth. Conversely, a birth injury stems from an event that occurs before, during or after labor. Unlike many birth defects, external causes lead to birth injuries. CALL US AT: 312-346-8700 | chhlaw.com
  5. 5. Common Causes of Birth Injuries Some birth injuries are caused by one traumatic event, while others are caused by several factors. For example, if a doctor calls for a cesarean section when it is not needed and then misuses forceps during the procedure, the birth injury had many causes. Keeping that in mind, let’s look at a few ways mistakes are made during labor. CALL US AT: 312-346-8700 | chhlaw.com
  6. 6. Number 1: Not recognizing warning signs Doctors and nurses are trained to identify potential risks to a baby and mother. They are also trained to act accordingly when they see those warning signs. Failure to take the proper steps during labor can have disastrous consequences for both mother and child. CALL US AT: 312-346-8700 | chhlaw.com
  7. 7. Number 2: Not alerting the mother of possible risks Prior to labor, a mother should be warned by her doctor if her condition might pose a risk to her or her baby. Doctors should advise mothers to monitor weight, diet or any other factor that might increase the likelihood of a birth injury. CALL US AT: 312-346-8700 | chhlaw.com
  8. 8. Number 3: Mistakes during delivery Several things can go wrong during labor if a doctor makes a mistake. Examples of those mistakes include:  Misusing forceps  Failing to identify the need for a cesarean section or calling for one when it isn’t needed  Failing to administer the proper medications  Improperly performing a vacuum extraction  Failure to sterilize the tools and environment, leading to an infection CALL US AT: 312-346-8700 | chhlaw.com
  9. 9. Number 4: Mistakes immediately following delivery If the newborn shows signs of injury or illness, doctors and nurses should respond immediately with the proper course of action. Both the mother and the child should be watched closely by medical professionals to ensure there are no signs of injury or illness. CALL US AT: 312-346-8700 | chhlaw.com
  10. 10. The Impact of a Birth Injury A birth injury can have severe effects on a newborn, including:  Blood loss  Lack of oxygen  Damage to the brain  Damage to vital areas of the newborn’s body, such as the face, neck, shoulders or limbs CALL US AT: 312-346-8700 | chhlaw.com
  11. 11. Long-Term Consequences While some newborns may eventually recover from injuries suffered during birth, others do not. For those unfortunate children and for their families, the injuries result in a lifetime of challenges that potentially include:  Extensive medical treatment  Ongoing care and the need for assistance  Expensive bills related to treatment, medication, physical therapy and special needs living requirements  Impaired ability to earn an adequate income  Diminished quality of life CALL US AT: 312-346-8700 | chhlaw.com
  12. 12. Seeking Legal Help When a medical professional’s mistakes are the cause of a serious birth injury, a family can file a medical malpractice claim to seek payment for the costs they will encounter. While compensation doesn’t heal injuries, it ensures that any of the obstacles a family faces will not be economic. CALL US AT: 312-346-8700 | chhlaw.com
  13. 13. Contact CHH to Learn More The birth injury attorneys at Cirignani Heller & Harman, LLP have years of experience handling these types of cases. We know how to identify signs of medical negligence and, more importantly, we know what it takes to build a successful case on behalf of our clients. Our Chicago medical malpractice attorneys offer free case evaluations. Contact us today by calling 312-346-8700 or filling out our online contact form. CALL US AT: 312-346-8700 | chhlaw.com

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