No would-be parent expects that their child will suffer an injury at birth. Unfortunately, even with advances in medical technologies, many parents deal with this sad reality each year. Depending on the severity, a birth injury can leave parents with a lifetime of concerns, questions and costly medical care.
One of the most devastating injuries an infant can suffer either before or during birth is a brain injury. Brain damage during birth can be caused by a variety of reasons. Here are the most common ones:
Improper use of forceps and vacuum extractors
Forceps and vacuum extracts are used to guide the baby through the birth canal during birth. Used by untrained birth attendants or under the wrong circumstances, these birthing aids can cause a range of brain injuries such as TBIs, strokes and bleeding to the brain.
Infections to the mother can pass on to the baby’s growing brain during birth. Cytokines, for instance, can cause inflammation, which can result in brain damage to the infant during birth. Other infections that can pass from mother to baby and cause brain damage include rubella, cytomegalovirus, toxoplasmosis and chickenpox.
So when can you hold the healthcare provider responsible for your baby’s brain injury?
A doctor or other healthcare provider can be held liable for brain damage at birth if they fail to provide appropriate care to the mother and child before and during birth. Here are examples of circumstances when a healthcare provider can liable for brain damage or any other birth injury:
- When they fail to diagnose and treat the mother before birth
- When they fail to recognize labor signs and admit the mother in time
- When they prolong the delivery, fail to induce labor or perform C-section
- When they fail to monitor the baby and respond to fetal distress in time
- When they aggressively use aids like forceps and vacuum extractors during the delivery.
Brain injuries at birth can leave your child with life-long limitations. Find out how you can pursue damages if your baby sustains a brain injury at birth.