Medical Negligence During Birth
Medical malpractice can occur at any point during the patient-care process, regardless of the procedure. Unfortunately, preventable childbirth injuries occur with alarming regularity. In fact, negligence during delivery is one of the leading causes of medical malpractice lawsuits.
When a doctor is negligent during childbirth, both the mother and child could face severe long-term consequences. If you or your child are the victim of birth injury malpractice, then you should consider filing a lawsuit against the negligent medical personnel responsible for your and your child’s care.
At Eisenberg, Rothweiler, Winkler, Eisenberg & Jeck, P.C., our Pennsylvania birth injury malpractice lawyers will help guide you throughout each stage of the legal process. Our dedicated trial attorneys have helped many families get answers and recover maximum compensation for catastrophic birth injuries. Some of our notable victories in birth injury cases include:
- $8.9 million settlement for a baby who suffered brain damage during labor
- $4.5 million settlement for an infant who was injured when the mother suffered a uterine rupture at birth
Let our experienced birth injury attorneys demand justice on behalf of your family. Contact us now to schedule your free consultation.
Why Choose Eisenberg, Rothweiler, Winkler, Eisenberg & Jeck, P.C.?
Expanding your family should be a time of joy — you should not have to worry about medical malpractice and its resulting consequences. Our Philadelphia medical malpractice lawyers have taken a particular interest in mothers and children suffering from birth injuries as a result of medical negligence. We have amassed a record of medical malpractice victories and know how to litigate cases of a complex and sensitive nature.
Although our medical malpractice law firm is located in Philadelphia, we will represent birth injury malpractice clients from all across the country. Our team will work tirelessly to hold any negligent parties accountable for the damage done to you and your child.
What Are Common Causes of Negligence During Childbirth?
Although childbirth often requires quick decision making by medical personnel, negligence is never acceptable. Typically, you have grounds to file a medical malpractice suit if the doctor, nurse, midwife, or medical practitioner:
- Chose a medically inappropriate course of treatment
- Failed to exercise proper skill or care during the delivery
It is also important to know that any medical personnel assisting during childbirth must meet the “Medical Standard of Care.” This is a legal concept that requires a doctor, nurse, or midwife to act as any other similarly skilled practitioner would under like circumstances. If a medical practitioner fails to meet this standard, then that action (or inaction) can be considered malpractice.
If you have questions about the “Medical Standard of Care” during childbirth, then please reach out to one of our Pennsylvania medical malpractice lawyers. We can review the evidence surrounding your case and will properly advise you about your legal options.
What Injuries Can Occur Due to Negligence During Delivery?
There are many different types of injuries that a child or mother can suffer during delivery. Some of the common types of catastrophic birth injuries include:
- Hypoxic-Ischemic Encephalopathy (HIE). This injury is commonly referred to as birth asphyxia. It is a deadly brain injury that occurs when a baby is deprived of oxygen during delivery. If the mother’s blood pressure drops during delivery, or there are problems with the umbilical cord, then the baby could become deprived of oxygen.
- Brachial Plexus Birth Palsy. This birth injury is commonly referred to as Erb’s palsy. It is a nerve-related injury that occurs when the infant’s neck or shoulder is stretched too far by medical personnel during delivery.
- Cerebral Palsy. Among the most common types of birth injuries, cerebral palsy (CP) is caused by a brain injury that stems from oxygen deprivation, infection in the newborn, and other issues, such as a stroke. CP symptoms can include muscle, reflex, and coordination issues, and even paralysis.
- Spinal Cord Injuries. Physical trauma during delivery and breech birth are among the causes of spinal cord injuries in newborns.
- Intracranial Hemorrhage. Bleeding may occur within the brain or in the area between the brain and skull. If the bleeding is not promptly treated, the affected area of the brain could have permanent damage. Babies with an intracranial hemorrhage may develop cerebral palsy.
- Shoulder Dystocia. This injury occurs when the infant’s shoulders become stuck in the birth canal during a vaginal delivery. A delay of just a few minutes between the emergence of a baby’s head and shoulders can have an impact on the baby’s health, requiring swift action on the part of the doctor handling the delivery.
A mother could also suffer from any of the following injuries:
- Perineal Tearing. This is a laceration of the skin or soft tissue structures that separate the vagina from the anus. Medical malpractice claims are typically filed if medical personnel provide inadequate or negligent treatment after such tearing occurs.
- C-Section Injuries. A C-section is a medical procedure where an unborn child is delivered through an incision made through the mother’s abdomen and uterine wall. The bladder is the most frequently injured organ when medical malpractice occurs during a C-section.
- Pelvic Fractures. If you are experiencing incontinence, back pain, or pain during urination, bowel movements, or sex, then you might have an undiagnosed pelvic fracture or tear. While medical personnel is supposed to prevent or help care for these types of injuries, they often go unnoticed and cause substantial problems.
Compensation for Birth Injuries
There are many different types of damages that families can suffer due to an injury to an infant or mother during birth. Although there is no amount of money that can turn back the clock on what has happened, our goal as your lawyer is to pursue the full amount you need to care for your child or yourself and move forward with your life.
When you bring a lawsuit, you can seek economic and non-economic damages.
Economic damages include:
- Medical bills (past and future)
- Lost wages
- Lost earning capacity
- Caretaking expenses
Non-economic damages include:
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of life’s pleasure
- Increased risk of future harm
- Shortened life expectancy
Your family should not have to worry about being able to afford the best possible treatment and care for your child after a birth injury. Let our attorneys review your case for free and explain what compensation you may be entitled to receive.
How Do You Prove Negligence in a Birth Injury Case?
The first step toward seeking the full and fair compensation you deserve in a birth injury case involves identifying the doctor or health care worker’s negligence as the cause of injury. Our lawyers can explain the elements of proof needed to show who was responsible for the birth injury. Our attorneys can also collect all the evidence required to build a strong case.
To file a birth injury lawsuit, you must be able to prove:
- Negligence. This means proving that the doctor acted in a way that another qualified doctor would not have under similar circumstances.
- Causation. You must prove that the negligence was the direct cause of the birth injury.
- Harm. You must prove that the health care provider’s negligence or carelessness caused damages. Doctors sometimes make mistakes that do not cause harm. You may only file a lawsuit if you incur damages from the health care provider’s negligence.
Numerous parties may be held responsible for a birth injury, including:
- Lab technicians
Our law firm has extensive experience handling complex birth injury cases. We work with families who are struggling to cope with catastrophic injuries that will impact them for the rest of their lives. Our trial attorneys know how tough these cases can be, and we are prepared to fight aggressively for the justice you deserve.
How Long Do You Have to File a Birth Injury Lawsuit?
In the state of Pennsylvania, birth injury lawsuits typically must be filed within two years of the date your child turns 18 years old. This is known as the statute of limitations. Wrongful death lawsuits must be filed within two years from the date of the death.
Birth injury cases are quite complex. They take time and resources. This is why it is crucial that you speak with our knowledgeable birth injury attorneys as soon as possible. The injury lawyers at Eisenberg, Rothweiler, Winkler, Eisenberg & Jeck, P.C., can get answers to the difficult questions regarding your child’s injury. Our team is committed to doing everything we can to help you recover the full and fair compensation you deserve.
If your labor and/or delivery was improperly managed by a medical professional, then you should contact Eisenberg, Rothweiler, Winkler, Eisenberg & Jeck, P.C., today and schedule a free initial consultation. Our Pennsylvania birth malpractice lawyers are ready to hear from you and will address your legal concerns.
You and your child deserve to receive the best medical care possible during labor and delivery. When this fails to happen, our Philadelphia medical malpractice law firm will help you pick up the pieces and move forward with your life.