The birth of a baby is usually one of the highlights in the lives of parents in Washington. However, pregnant mothers put their lives and the lives of their unborn children in the hands of doctors and other health care workers. Sadly, despite the unwavering trust most people give their doctors, medical negligence could cause personal injury or even death.
Different circumstances lead to the most common birth injuries, and doctors are typically expected to identify signs of potentially difficult births and take the necessary precautions to prevent causing injuries. Excessive weight of the baby can complicate the birthing process, and in contrast, premature babies who are born before the 37th week are incredibly fragile and easily injured. Cephalopelvic disproportion refers to the shape and size of the pelvis of the mother, which could make vaginal birth impossible or dangerous.
Other potential birth injuries include Dystocia, which could happen during a complicated labor process, and prolonged labor can also compromise the mother and baby’s safety. In some cases, the infant presents abnormally, such as the buttocks appearing first instead of the baby’s head. This is called a breech birth.
When vacuum extraction equipment is used during the birth process, damage to the soft scalp tissues can occur, and it could also cause facial and scalp bruising. When forceps are also used, it could even cause lacerations. Facial pressure during birth can damage nerves that cause facial paralysis, and damage to the infant’s brachial plexus can cause permanent shoulder movement problems. A problematic delivery could result in a fractured collarbone.
No one wants a newborn infant to have to suffer the consequences of birth injuries that were preventable. When that happens, parents might have questions about the viability of a civil lawsuit. An experienced Washington personal injury attorney can explain their rights and assist with establishing negligence and navigating the ensuing legal proceedings to recover financial and emotional damages.