Wrongful Death of a Mother During Childbirth

The science of medicine is on a never ending road to progress.  Unfortunately at the same time, the rate of maternal deaths actually doubled in the time between the early 1980’s and the first decade of the 21st century. 

Experienced Kingston medical malpractice attorneys know that the maternal death rate continues to rise.  In fact, there were 18.5 maternal deaths per 100,000 births in 2013.  This is something that which the United States of America is not proud of; it is actually an embarrassment.  The question begging to be asked is, why is this happening – especially because maternal deaths are highly preventable. 

There are many reasons, but the one most important to Kingston medical malpractice attorneys lies in the area of medical negligence.  Sometimes, the mother’s death during childbirth, or shortly thereafter, occurred because a medical professional failed to perform their job properly. 

In legalese this is referred to as a deviation – the medical professional is charged with a duty of care to the patient and to follow the prescribed standard of treatment.  Deviating from that standard of care can and has caused harm to the patient that could have been prevented.  The deviation is especially troubling if other doctors in the profession would not have allowed such a deviation to occur. 

A failure to check the expectant mother for the signs of vaginal bleeding is a deviation from required pre-natal care.  Properly checking for this includes getting a full patient medical history and understanding her lifestyle habits.  A simple ultrasound can diagnose the problem as well.   

The placenta can separate from the uterine wall too soon.  This is diagnosable as well.  But if left undiagnosed and untreated, could cause the death of the baby and mother.  Uterine ruptures happen and should be recognized, but sometimes are not.  Doctors and or nurses can even be the direct cause of a uterine rupture. 

Note that maternal deaths do not just occur during child birth.  Deaths of mothers within the several weeks after child birth also fall within the category of maternal deaths.  Postpartum bleeding is extremely troubling.  Significant blood loss can occur and can be detected by medical professionals.  These professionals are expected to respond accordingly, but sometimes they do not. 

The expectant mother’s pre-natal care must include checking her for signs of diabetes and high blood pressure.  Failures to monitor blood pressure can lead to liver damage, seizures, and even placental separation.  Again, treating doctors can and have been known to not respond properly to the mother’s high blood pressure.  Blood clotting is a potential danger too and doctors should be on the lookout for signs of this problem.

But what do you think?  I would love to hear from you!  Leave a comment or I also welcome your phone call on my toll-free cell at 1-866-889-6882 or you can drop me an e-mail at [email protected]  You are always welcome to request my FREE book, The Seven Deadly Mistakes of Malpractice Victims, at the home page of my website at www.protectingpatientrights.com

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