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Labor and delivery is not supposed to lead to injury

Pregnancy and childbirth can be often one of the most joyful and rewarding times in a woman’s life. However, if a doctor, nurse or other staff member is negligent during labor or delivery, what is supposed to be an exciting time can quickly turn into a devastating experience.

Medical negligence often results in birth injuries. In addition to the trauma of witnessing your infant suffering, the most frustrating aspect of a birth injury situation may be that it was likely preventable was it not for substandard medical care. It’s understandable you’d feel a strong desire to seek justice on your injured child’s behalf.

Life-long complications

While you were no doubt greatly relieved that your baby survived a birth injury, it doesn’t necessarily mean your weren’t deeply troubled by the events that took place that resulted in his or her injury. Many birth injuries cause severe pain and discomfort to newborns. The following list shows some of the most common types of injuries babies often suffer due to medical negligence:

  • Bone fractures: Infants often suffer fractured clavicles or collarbones as they make their way through the birth canal. If a doctor fails to diagnose that a baby is likely too large to fit through the size of the mother’s pelvis, it can result in a painful birth injury to the baby. 
  • Facial paralysis: If your doctor uses forceps to assist your baby’s birth, it may cause a facial nerve injury. This injury sometimes resolves itself after several weeks or may require surgical treatment in more serious conditions.
  • Brachial palsy: If your infant seems to have trouble moving his or her arm or hand or appears to suffer pain if you lift him or her under the arm, it may be a sign of a brachial plexus birth injury. This type of injury often results from shoulder dystocia during the delivery process.

Many of these and other birth injuries can be avoided when doctors carefully monitor fetal and maternal condition during pregnancy and during labor and delivery. For instance, it is often easy for a doctor to tell that a baby may be too large to fit through a birth canal, which allows him or her to schedule a C-section to avoid infant injury.

Recovering from a birth injury experience

Birth injuries are traumatic for mothers and infants, as well as other family members who are concerned for their well-being. Families often face financial distress following a birth injury because such situations often necessitate additional medical treatment and follow-up care. Parents should not have to bear the full financial responsibility associated with an incident that might have been prevented if care providers had acted in accordance with accepted safety standards and medical protocol. Ohio law allows parents to seek justice on an injured child’s behalf.