When patients are under the care of a doctor, they trust that medical professionals will provide them with care that meets a certain standard. Pregnant women depend on their care providers to keep a close eye on the development of their pregnancy and catch any problems that may arise quickly. Birth injuries are often preventable with vigilant and quality care.
There are times when a birth injury may happen due to natural causes. However, a doctor is often able to diagnose problems and issues that arise during pregnancy that may lead to an issue during birth. In many cases, injuries are preventable with regular doctor visits, quality care, appropriate diagnostic tests and listening to patient concerns. If your child suffered an injury during birth, it is possible your doctor could be to blame.
Issues that may cause injuries
There are various reasons why a baby may experience an injury during the birth process. Some of the most common reasons why they happen include:
- The baby is large or is not face down in the birth canal.
- The shape of the mother’s birth canal or pelvis will not allow for a safe delivery.
- The use of forceps or a vacuum during delivery.
- The doctor allowed labor to continue for too long without necessary interventions.
Some birth injuries, such as the swelling of the baby’s head or damage to certain blood vessels, may resolve themselves over time. Certain types of nerve damage may also resolve themselves over time, but certain types of birth injuries are detrimental and permanent.
Doctors should monitor patients carefully for signs that birth could be traumatic for the mother or the child. They should monitor physical symptoms closely and plan for certain types of interventions that may prevent injuries during birth. Lack of interventions, or interventions used incorrectly, could lead to damage that may affect a baby for the rest of his or her life.
What can victims do?
When a baby suffers an injury during birth, the family may end up with expensive medical bills and expenses associated with helping a child with a severe injury. If you suspect your doctor acted negligently or failed to act in a way that could have prevented your child’s injury, you would have grounds for a civil claim. It may be helpful to speak with an experienced Oregon medical malpractice attorney.