Know These Signs of Birth Injuries Related to Medical Malpractice

Some signs of birth injuries related to medical malpractice include:

Traumatic birth
Low APGAR scores
A baby who is not alert at birth, is blue or pale in color, has poor muscle tone, trembling arms or legs, seizures, difficulty breathing, a low heart rate or trouble nursing
Breech presentation
Weak cry
Meconium in the amniotic fluid
Vaginal birth despite cephalopelvic disproportion, meaning the mother’s pelvis is not adequate to support vaginal delivery due to its shape and size
Prolonged labor
Acidosis (low ph)
Cerebral edema – an accumulation of excess fluid in the substance of the brain
Severe bruising, which is evidence of forced delivery or excessive trauma during birth
Hypoxic – Ischemic Encephalopathy, which is the lack of oxygen reaching vital body tissues
Difficult forceps delivery, or a delivery requiring the use of vacuum extraction
Birth asphyxia, meaning the baby did not receive enough oxygen before, during or just after birth
Static encephalopathy
Neonatal depression
Developmental delays
Caput succedaneum, a severe swelling of the soft tissues of the baby’s scalp, which occurs as the baby travels through the birth canal. It is usually accompanied by some bruising, which normally disappears within a few days.
Cephalohematoma, an area of bleeding underneath one of the cranial bones, which often appears several hours after delivery in the form of a raised lump on the baby’s head. The body usually reabsorbs the blood and the lump goes away within two to three weeks, though occasionally babies develop jaundice if the area of bleeding is large.
Some babies show signs of temporary bruising, marks and lacerations as a result of passing through the birth canal or the use of forceps or vacuum extraction.
Pressure may be placed on the baby’s facial nerves during labor or birth, possibly due to use of forceps for delivery. If a nerve was only bruised, the paralysis improves within a few weeks, but surgery may be necessary if the nerve is torn.
Newborns also sometimes suffer from subconjunctival hemorrhaging, the breakage of small blood vessels in the eyes, which may result in a bright red band around the eye.
Fractures
Cerebral palsy
Erb’s palsy
Paraplegia
Quadriplegia
Miscalculating the due date and allowing pregnancy to continue without proper testing
Failing to act on changes in the mother’s condition during pregnancy
Causing or failing to respond to the umbilical cord being entrapped or compressed
Misuse of a vacuum extractor or forceps
Misuse of labor-stimulating drugs
Delay in ordering or performing a Cesarean section
Poor resuscitation and poor care after birth
Breech delivery
Failure to monitor maternal/fetal health
Failure to notice/act on fetal distress
Placenta abruptions
Improper prescription of medication or dosage
Maternal infection
Malfunction of device/improper use of device (forceps/vacuum)
Low oxygen supply (hypoxia or anoxia) during labor and delivery
Failure to recognize abnormal signs and symptoms in pregnant patients
Incorrect interpretation of electronic fetal monitor records
Slow response in correcting dangerous conditions and protecting patient
Subconjunctival hemorrhage
Macromia – baby large for gestational age
Exceptionally long labor
Electronic fetal heart rate monitoring and fetal scalp pH sampling are usually used during labor so that medical professionals can take appropriate action, which often necessitates rapid performance of a Cesarean section if fetal distress is revealed.

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