Do you have a birth injury lawsuit if your baby’s bones were broken at birth?
Although childbirth can be exciting, the labor process is a critical time for the mother and the child. Unlike adults, newborns have softer bones that are more susceptible to breaks and fractures. In some cases, a child may sustain a broken or fractured bone during the delivery process.
While these injuries may heal without incident, parents may incur additional medical expenses as a result. If you suspect that the injury was caused by medical negligence, contact an experienced birth injury lawyer to learn about your legal options. We regularly help parents file negligence claims and receive compensation for broken bones and other common birth injuries.
Types of birth injuries involving broken bones
Among the most common types of birth injuries, broken bone injuries rank high. Other types of birth injuries include cerebral palsy, jaundice, spinal cord injuries, vacuum extraction complications, brain injuries and intrauterine fetal demise. Unlike birth defects, which typically take place while the unborn child is still developing in the womb, birth injuries occur while the baby is in the process of being born.
Clavicle fractures are the most common broken bone injuries. Depending on certain factors that may affect the mother or the baby, broken bones during delivery may occur in any part of the child’s body.
In addition to the clavicle, broken bones and fractures commonly occur in newborns in the following body parts:
How broken bones occur during the birthing process
There are several conditions that may greatly increase the likelihood of a newborn sustaining a broken bone during birth. If a baby is breached, a doctor may exert force to reposition or pull the baby out. If a baby is especially large or has a large head, the child may have more difficulty traveling through the birth canal.
In these cases, the doctor may use forceps or other instruments to aid in the delivery process. If labor goes on for too long, the child may have an increased risk of having a bone broken.
Improper use of Pitocin, a drug commonly used to induce labor, may also result in broken bones.
Impacts of broken bone birth injuries
Birth injuries may range from mild to lethal in terms of severity. Some injuries heal quickly while others cause long-term or lifelong disability—or even result in the child’s immediate or eventual death. Minor injuries may require the doctor to place the bone in a splint.
Severe cases may require surgical intervention. Broken necks and backs are generally considered to be the most severe injuries as they may cause paralysis or even death. Broken bones may also cause nerve damage that may have moderate or severe lingering effects.
Sometimes parents may have difficulty determining whether or not their child’s injury occurred as a result of a hospital’s or medical practitioner’s negligence. Our birth injury lawyers specialize in evaluating the facts of each case to make that determination for you.
Contact an experienced birth injury attorney
If you or someone you know has a newborn that sustained an injury during the birthing process, contact a birth injury attorney near you.
Not only do birth injury attorneys rely on their experience and legal training, but they also consult experts in the medical field who are able to give their professional opinion to help establish your case. Plaintiffs in birth injury cases may receive compensation to cover medical treatment, your lost earnings (due to taking time away from work to provide extra care for the child) and compensation for nursing, rehabilitation and special education (if required as a result of the child’s injury).
Depending on the circumstances of the case, a judge may award non-economic damages for physical and mental injury, pain and suffering and loss of enjoyment of life. If the medical care provider who is at fault for the injury acted maliciously or intentionally, the judge may also order the plaintiff to pay punitive damages—though this is rare.
Our nationally-respected birth injury lawyers at Brown Trial Firm are available to represent you whether you are in Texas or in another state. We have a proven track record of successfully representing plaintiffs in a variety of birth injury cases across the country.