Category Archives: Legal Services

Knowing when to File a Cerebral Palsy Lawsuit

Cerebral palsy is an extremely debilitating disease. Sometimes caused by different forms of brain injuries sustained either before, during, or after pregnancy, cerebral palsy can affect an individual for a lifetime.

However, if a mother who experienced a healthy pregnancy notices strange symptoms in her child early on, something’s likely wrong. Her kid may have trouble moving around or eating and may even exhibit muscle spasms which are uncommon with healthy children. If the symptoms persist, the child’s condition may be due to the medical team’s neglect either knowingly or unknowingly committed during childbirth.

Situations like an umbilical cord wrapped around a baby’s neck are one of the most common mistakes committed during childbirth. If doctors took too long to remove the cord, the newborn’s brain would have been deprived of oxygen, a common denominator in cerebral palsy cases. A longer-than-normal delivery is also a culprit, as well as the baby getting stuck for a long period in the birth canal. The specific instruments a doctor uses can also cause brain trauma when they’re not handled properly.

If the child’s current condition seems to be one that would stick for a lifetime, it’s enough reason to file for a lawsuit with the help of a cerebral palsy attorney. While no amount of money can compensate the suffering of both the parents and their child, the compensation package will at least provide the child with quality care he or she rightfully deserves.


Reasons to Hire a Cerebral Palsy Attorney

Cerebral palsy is a condition sometimes caused by a birth injury. This means that either before, during, or shortly after pregnancy, the baby sustains a form of brain injury. Such brain injury may lead to several illnesses that may heal over time, while others may last a lifetime. Couples may file for medical malpractice damages for the latter case, which are better handled with a cerebral palsy attorney’s help. Here are a few more reasons why these attorneys are great allies in such cases:

Expertise – Cerebral palsy lawsuits may involve numerous details that can be overwhelming for someone with little or no specialized legal training. Several cerebral palsy lawyers are experienced enough to take the challenge head-on, counting on what they have learned during their time practicing medical malpractice litigation.

If the cerebral palsy’s root cause is undetermined – Couples unsure whether their child’s injury was caused by doctor malpractice can look to an experienced and skilled medical malpractice lawyer. The attorney can ably assess the case and work with an impartial medical professional to look for clues that may point to medical malpractice as a root cause.

Establishing Doctor’s Liability for Birth Injuries

Labor is one of the most crucial operations in the medical world. Even the slightest mistake can lead to the endangerment of both the mother and the infant’s lives. So if a doctor did something wrong that results into injuries to you and your child, you can hold your doctor accountable. Medical malpractice happens when a doctor, the medical staff, or the entire hospital’s negligence results to the patient’s sickness or death. Lawyers can help endorse your claim.

Birth injury means any injury the mother or the infant received from the time of her pregnancy until the day of delivery. During pregnancy, a doctor’s negligence can cause many complications that may lead to birth defects or miscarriages. For example, if you develop maternal diabetes during your pregnancy because your doctor didn’t conduct regular check-ups, or he or she failed to inform you, it is considered medical malpractice.

Birth injuries can also happen on the day of the child’s birth. If the doctor failed to monitor the oxygen intake of your child before and after the actual birth, your child could develop cerebral palsy. Preeclampsia, or the mother having seizures during birth, can also occur if the doctor fails to monitor the mother’s blood pressure during delivery. Aside from those physical injuries during birth, there are also the emotional and psychological damages to factor in.

Every deed has its own consequence, and so does negligence. Contact your birth injury lawyer to learn how you can properly handle birth injury claims.

The Risks of a C-Section

In most cases, giving birth via Cesarean section (C-section) is seen as the safer way to deliver a child. However, take note that this doesn’t mean C-sections are completely devoid of risks. Some of these risks include:

For the Child:

  • Respiratory disorders like transient tachypnea

  • Skin abrasions from surgical equipment

For the Mother:

  • Increased risk of injury in future vaginal births

  • Development of blood clots

  • Adverse reactions to anesthesia

  • Bacterial infections

There will be times when a doctor will ask if you prefer to give birth via C-section several weeks before your expected due date. If your doctor asks you this, counter by asking what the risks of a C-section are. Doctors are required by law to explain the potential risks of any procedure so that patients can make informed decisions.

In the event that you develop complications from a C-section which your doctor failed to warn you about, seek the help of a respected birth injury lawyer. Failure to disclose procedural risks is a legitimate reason for medical malpractice lawsuits.

Truth be told, the risks of a C-section are very rare, especially if your doctor is very thorough with his or her work. As such, choose your doctor wisely.

Leading Causes of Birth Injury

Giving birth is a very technical process that should only be performed by experienced medical professionals. However, things can still go wrong even with precaution. One study revealed that 9.5% of medical malpractice cases involving birth injury was the result of failure to diagnose a condition while 4.7% involved the wrong diagnosis.

Below are some of the birth injuries that can occur within a hospital environment

Maternal low blood pressure or interference during delivery can lead to poor supply of oxygen to the infant’s brain, which can lead to a condition known as perinatal asphyxia. If perinatal asphyxia is not addressed, it can lead to the newborn’s death.

Another equally possible birth injury is Erb’s palsy, a paralysis of the arm of the newborn because of putting too much pressure applied when pulling the shoulders.

Rarely occurring but still very much fatal is brachial plexus palsy, where the cause is similar to Erb’s palsy. A newborn is very delicate and fragile; any misuse of pressure can immediately be harmful.

Lastly, the most frequent case is meconium aspiration syndrome wherein the baby accidentally inhales a mixture of meconium and amniotic fluid in the womb.

Should you encounter any of these and other birth injuries, immediately seek help from lawyers who specialize in this field. They understand the amount of emotional distress a birth injury brings, and so they make sure you get utmost legal representation.

Know If Birth Injury Was By Medical Negligence

A recent incident of a birth injury claim happened on July 8, 2014 when the parents of Maverick Ramseyer filed a case seeking $40 million from three doctors for their son’s cerebral palsy. A trial will be held on 2015. About 20 percent of cerebral palsy cases are because of medical malpractice.

Determine if birth injury was caused by medical malpractice if one (or more) of the following incidents occurred:

Injury to the mother or child during pregnancy or delivery
If the mother is injured – the mother can file a medical malpractice if the doctor was negligent and careless, which caused her injury during birth (such as failure to treat her high blood pressure)
If the infant is injured – if the infant is injured due to the doctor’s incompetent surgical skills, the parents can file a lawsuit against the doctor
Emotional injury to parents – the parents may also sue the doctor for their painful experience and their baby’s

Wrongful birth – when parents are not informed of their baby’s possible birth defects in which they could have decided to terminate the pregnancy and avoid the birth injuries

Wrongful pregnancy – when the parents try to avoid a pregnancy, but it’s continued. The parents may claim medical malpractice to the negligent doctor for continuing the unwanted pregnancy. This may be due to failed operations like abortion, pregnancy testing, and sterilization. However, thee damages that could be recovered with this case depends on the state.