Almost four million babies were born during the 2013 calendar year in the United States of America. That is a lot of babies. It is probable that most were born healthy and strong. With that said, eight percent were categorized as being low in birth weight. Just over eleven percent was born preterm.
Experienced Kingston, New York medical malpractice attorneys also know that many children are born with injuries, some of which are significant. Tissue damage, organ damage, fractures, and nerve damage are some of the most severe injuries seen on children at the time of delivery.
More significantly is that many of the injuries faced by newborn children occurred at the hands of a negligent medical professional. Unfortunately it happens all too often that a nurse, doctor, or other medical professional in the delivery room did something that which should not have been done. In fact the act (or failure to act) deviated so far away from the required standard of care that another doctor in similar circumstances would never have made the mistake.
Preventable and avoidable medical malpractice occurs not only in the delivery room. It can also happen while the mother is pregnant. Indeed, mistakes that happen during pregnancy can have devastating effects when the time of child birth comes.
Even though any number of injuries can occur – perhaps infinite – there has arisen a core group of birth injuries that are more common than others. The following lists the 10 most common birth injuries in the United States, written in no particular order.
Sometimes a child is born with broken bones. This can be attributed to mistakes made by doctors. For example, forceps can be used improperly. The babies’ limbs have been pulled or yanked. Inexperienced medical staff is a reason that this happens. Other times the pre-natal doctors did not do their jobs properly by failing to recognize that the mother should deliver via C-Section. For example, the baby was too large for vaginal delivery and the doctors pulled too hard to deliver the large child.
Injuries to the Spinal Cord:
The improper use of forceps can in fact cause spinal cord injuries. This is entirely preventable and at the same time one of the most severe injuries that babies can have.
Brachial Plexus Injuries:
This is an injury to the nerves in the upper spine, shoulders, arm and neck. Most of the time, these injuries eventually become completely healed. In some cases there will be permanent injury. Pulling on the child during delivery is a common reason this happens.
Other common injuries are:
- Perinatal Asphycis
- Subconjunctival Hemorrhage
- Caput Succedaneum
- Perinatal Asphyxia
- Facial Paralysis
- Cerebral Palsy
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