Was My Child’s Birth Injury Preventable?
Childbirth is not an easy process. Even with all of the medical advancements that have been made, both mother and child are at risk of injury during labor and delivery. Medical professionals are responsible for delivering high quality care that minimizes the risk of complications and protects the health and well-being of their patients.
When a birth injury occurs, parents are likely to wonder what caused it, or more specifically, “was my child’s birth injury preventable?” Birth injury lawyers at the Tawwater Law Firm, in Oklahoma City, OK, examine the events that lead to a birth injury to determine if a medical professional is liable. If liable, a medical malpractice claim can be filed to pursue compensation for damages.
Birth Injury vs. Birth Defect
If a child is born with health issues that will affect their physical and/or mental capacities, both the child and their parents are likely to experience difficulties throughout the child’s life. Children with injuries or health issues may require special medical care, ongoing rehabilitation and/or therapy, and educational assistance, all of which can be time consuming and costly. When determining if someone is liable for these types of damages, it is important to first distinguish whether the child suffered from a birth injury or a birth defect.
- Birth defect - A birth defect develops in utero. Birth defects are often the result of congenital abnormalities or genetic conditions passed on from the mother or father.
- Birth injury - A birth injury occurs during labor and delivery. Birth injuries may be caused by oxygen deprivation, improper extraction methods, or medical decisions, such as a delayed C-section.
Most Birth Injuries are Preventable
Whereas birth defects are generally not preventable, birth injuries nearly always are. A wide range of complications can develop during labor and delivery, and if medical professionals are not fully informed, or if they do not respond properly to issues as they develop, a birth injury can easily occur. Common causes of birth injury that are preventable include:
- Failure to identify risk factors during pregnancy
- Failure to monitor mother and/or fetus during labor and delivery
- Failure to recognize or respond to fetal distress
- Failure to order or delay in ordering a C-section
- Pulling on a baby’s head, shoulders, and/or arms during delivery, in excess
- Misuse of forceps or vacuum extractor
Was the Accepted Standard of Care Met?
If a preventable birth injury occurs and parents are considering whether a medical malpractice lawsuit should be filed, our Oklahoma City lawyers can determine if medical professionals met the accepted standard of care during labor and delivery.
In the medical field, the accepted standard of care is the degree of care that would be provided by similarly trained medical professionals who are presented with the same set of circumstances. If another trained medical professional would not have reasonably made the same decisions and/or mistakes that caused the birth injury, then the injury was preventable, and a medical malpractice claim can be filed.
Contact Our Law Firm
When a child suffers a preventable birth injury due to the neglect of a medical professional, liable parties should be held accountable for resulting losses. If you would like to know if you are due financial compensation for birth injury damages, the lawyers at the Tawwater Law Firm would be happy to examine the details of your case. To schedule a case review, send us a message online, or call our Oklahoma City law firm at (405) 673-8021.