Was My Child’s Birth Injury Preventable?
Having a child is one of the most amazing experiences. From conception, a parent’s instinct is to protect their child at all costs. Illness and injury are a part of life, but some babies enter the world at a disadvantage because of a birth injury. A birth injury can cause long-term physical and developmental damage. When a birth injury is preventable, there may be grounds to file a medical malpractice lawsuit.
The birth injury attorneys at Burke Argos work with parents in the Irvine, CA, area to determine if a child’s birth injury was preventable. We look at key factors to establish fault so that a child’s parents can pursue compensation for the economic and non-economic losses associated with a birth injury.
Preventable Birth Injury vs. Birth Defect
Birth injuries and birth defects can cause long-lasting or lifelong mental and physical disabilities. Since the consequences are often the same, it may not seem important to establish whether a child suffered a preventable birth injury or a birth defect. However, when a birth injury is preventable, the child’s parents have a right to monetary compensation for damages. Birth injuries and birth defects can be defined as follows:
- Birth injury: A birth injury happens during labor and delivery. Birth injuries are often the result of insufficient oxygen or improper extraction methods.
- Birth defect: A birth defect develops during gestation. Birth defects are often the result of congenital abnormalities or environmental effects.
Causes of Preventable Birth Injury
Complications frequently arise during childbirth. When medical personnel are prepared for difficulties and communicate properly, the risk of birth injuries is low. Birth injuries caused by medical malpractice (failure to deliver the accepted standard of care) are preventable. Frequent causes of preventable birth injuries include:
- Failure to monitor mother or child during labor and delivery
- Failure to respond to fetal distress
- Improper use of pitocin or other prescription medication
- Improper use of forceps or vacuum extractors
- Failure to perform or delay in performing a C-section
- Poor infant care after birth
Common Types of Birth Injuries
The type of birth injury a child suffers is often a good indicator of whether or not it was preventable. Some of the most common types of preventable birth injuries include:
- Cerebral palsy
- Erb’s palsy (Brachial palsy)
- Hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy
- Fetal stroke
- Facial paralysis
When to Hire a Birth Injury Lawyer
Medical professionals are unlikely to admit when a birth injury was preventable. Evidence such as medical records and testimony from experts in the field is the best way to prove that a birth injury was the result of substandard medical care. If parents in the Irvine area suspect their child’s birth injury was preventable, they should hire a birth injury attorney. Birth injury attorneys can investigate a case and gather the evidence to substantiate a legal claim.
If you or your child is suffering physical, emotional, or financial losses associated with a birth injury, the attorneys from Burke Argos can determine if it was preventable. To discuss the details of your case with our legal team, send us a message online or call our Irvine law firm at (949) 644-3434.