It is not only tragic when a baby suffers an injury during birth, but dealing with the emotional, medical and financial fallout can be extremely taxing and expensive.
That’s why there are experienced birth injury lawyers that are on your side, to help you recover the compensation to which you’re entitled.
They’re also there to help answer questions. This article will cover some of the common causes of birth injuries.
What Is a Birth Injury?
A birth injury is one that occurs during or shortly after a baby is delivered. Though a birth injury can be caused by a medical error, this is not always the case. Birth injuries also range in severity; some may be short-lived, and other more severe cases can result in chronic or permanent complications involving lengthy, costly treatment or which have lasting effects.
Common Birth Injuries and Causes
There are many common causes of birth injury, including but not limited to:
- Bruising; forceps marks: The trauma of passing through the birth canal can cause bruising, but in situations in which forceps were used to aid in delivery, babies may exhibit bruising on the face and head. Bruising may also present in the wake of vacuum extraction.
- Fractures: Babies sometimes break bones when passing through the birth canal; the most common fracture is of the clavicle (collarbone).
- Kernicterus: Also known as bilirubin encephalopathy, kernicterus occurs when there is either an increased production of, or a decrease in the elimination of, bilirubin. Kernicterus can cause brain damage in affected infants.
- Hypoxia: Hypoxia is a condition that occurs when the body does not receive enough oxygen. This condition can be caused by a variety of problems during delivery or shortly thereafter.
- Paralysis: Negligence during delivery, involving rough or improper handling of the newborn, can injure the baby’s neck or spine, paralyzing the infant. Facial paralysis may also occur due to pressure being applied to the baby’s face during delivery.
- Infections: There are a wide range of bacteria, viruses, and other pathogens that can infect neonates, which can cause a variety of injuries and lasting complications. Moreover, neonatal infection occasionally elicits an extreme immune response that can also be harmful to the infant.
- Cerebral palsy: Cerebral palsy is a neurological condition that affects motor coordination, muscular strength, and posture. It can be caused by irregular brain development, or to damage to the brain during development.
- Erb’s Palsy: Erb’s Palsy is characterized by paralysis of an arm due to trauma to the arm’s innervation. It affects motor development and function, and can result in a weak arm and shoulder.
Need a Birth Injury Lawyer in Philadelphia?
This list only covers some of the more common types of birth injuries, but there are many, many others. Still, it is a place to start.
Not sure if you have a case for a birth injury suit? If you’re in Pennsylvania, in or around Philadelphia, contact Tom Bosworth, a birth injury lawyer in Philadelphia who’s been named as one of the top 40 under 40.
Tom Bosworth stands for accountability for his clients, and from the culpable parties. Contact his office today at 267-928-4183 today for a free case consultation.