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Labor and Delivery Malpractice Attorneys in Ohio & Kentucky
Childbirth is an extremely important and delicate process. It is also meant to be a joyful moment for mothers and their families. However, the joy of childbirth can very quickly turn to horror, shock, and grief when something unexpected happens in the delivery room and causes birth-related injuries. Sometimes, these birth injuries are unavoidable, while other times, they are due to a health care provider’s negligence. When medical negligence occurs during the labor and delivery process, both the mother and the child may suffer lifelong injuries, even death, as a result.
Medical malpractice can take the form of medical error or neglect, and the aggrieved patient and their family may be entitled to compensation if they were the victim of labor and delivery malpractice. If you or your child or a loved one and/or their child received a birth injury due to the negligence of a medical professional, you may have a birth-related medical malpractice claim on your hands.
However, you should not try to bring this claim on your own. Medical malpractice cases of all kinds, especially those involving labor and delivery, are often very complex. These cases require a thorough analysis and extensive evaluation of hundreds of pages of medical records. That is why it is important that you obtain the help of a team of lawyers experienced in medical malpractice law and birth injury lawsuits. At The Lawrence Firm, our practice is made up of both Kentucky medical malpractice attorneys and Ohio medical malpractice attorneys who are skilled in achieving financial compensation for those who have been affected by birth injuries due to negligent medical care. To speak with an experienced medical malpractice attorney at our law firm today, call us toll-free at (800) 698-4053 or complete our online claim form. We will get started on pursuing your claim right away.
Birth Injuries Lawsuit
Your obstetrician and other medical professionals involved in the birthing process are responsible for monitoring the status of both mother and baby during labor and delivery. Failure to identify and address any problems that may arise can lead to medical error and failure to act, which is considered medical negligence.
Birth-related injuries and wrongful death of either or both mother and child can be devastating. In cases where these injuries could have been avoided by following proper procedures, those who are responsible for the birth trauma should be held accountable. Further, the victims of this negligence should be compensated for the harm caused.
In order for a labor and delivery malpractice lawsuit to be successful, certain elements must first be proven. First, a birth injury lawyer must establish the appropriate medical standard of care that should have been applied in the situation in question. To do so, the court must compare the actions of the defendant (the medical personnel responsible for the injury or death) to those of a healthcare professional with similar skill and training and in a similar setting. A qualified medical expert may testify to the proper standard of care that should have been applied.
Once the standard of care is established, the courts must measure the health care provider’s actions against this standard. It must not only be proven that the defendant deviated from that standard of care, but also that their deviation directly resulted in physical injuries or wrongful death to either mother or child. If there was nothing the health care professional could have done that would prevent the harm that occurred, there is no legal causation and the delivery malpractice claim cannot progress any further.
However, if the deviation of the proper medical standard of care is what led to the mother or baby’s injury, the victims or their families may sue the responsible party for their misconduct. From here, the court must identify and calculate the appropriate amount of damages to be awarded to the plaintiff.
What Damages are Available in a Labor and Delivery Malpractice Case?
In a birth-related medical malpractice case, there are several types of damages that may be awarded to the plaintiff for the losses they may have suffered. These include both economic damages and non-economic damages. We’ll cover each of these below.
Economic Damages for Birth Injury Case
Economic damages may also be referred to as “special” damages. These are damages that can provide an exact calculation of the financial losses incurred as a result of the medical negligence. This includes lost wages and future earning capacity, the medical expenses attributable to the treatment required due to the health care provider’s error (such as costs for therapy, medication, emergency surgery, hospital fees, medical equipment, etc.), and other financial damages caused by medical negligence. The amount of wages and employment benefits you’ve lost, as well as what you stand to lose in the future, are included in lost income and lost earning capacity.
Non-Economic Damages for Birth Injury Case
When a patient is injured by substandard medical care, their physical pain and suffering, as well as any mental and emotional impact, will also be calculated as non-economic damages. Non-economic damages might also be called “general” damages. These are elements of the case that are more subjective, and thus, are incapable of being precisely calculated. Things like pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment of life, and loss of consortium are all types of non-economic damages that may be awarded in a birth injury medical malpractice lawsuit.
It’s not always simple to translate a plaintiff’s grief and suffering into a monetary value, but some variables count more heavily than others. Your medical malpractice legal team must work hard to identify and establish the appropriate amount of non-economic damages that should be included in your compensation.
Medical Negligence During Childbirth Cases
Unfortunately, labor and delivery malpractice cases are not uncommon. Things like failure to perform a C-Section, brain and whole body cooling errors, nurse-midwife errors, the umbilical cord wrapped around the baby’s neck, and more may all lead to injuries that warrant these types of cases. At The Lawrence Firm, our Covington birth injury attorneys have handled our fair share of birth injury claims, and we’ve been able to help victims obtain compensation for a number of different types of injuries and disabilities.
As you know, labor and delivery malpractice can lead to birth injuries in both the mother and child. We’ll cover some of the more common types of birth injuries resulting from medical malpractice below:
Common Birth Injuries to a Child
- Cerebral Palsy
- Cerebral palsy is a neurological disorder characterized by a disorder of movement, muscle tone, or posture that results from damage to the developing brain and can affect a person’s ability to control their muscles. Cerebral palsy often results when a child suffers brain damage at or near the time of birth.
- Brachial Plexus Injury (Erb’s Palsy)
- The brachial plexus is a collection of nerves that run around the baby’s shoulder. The brachial plexus can be damaged depending on the baby’s posture during delivery, pressure on the baby’s arms, or stretching of the baby’s shoulders, which may lead to a loss of mobility or weakness in the baby’s arm.
- Fetal Distress
- When the baby is not receiving enough oxygen through the placenta, fetal distress may occur. If not treated efficiently, fetal distress can result in the baby breathing in amniotic fluid containing fecal matter and can make it difficult for them to breathe after birth or otherwise stop breathing altogether.
- Hypoxic/Ischemic Brain Injury
- Cerebral hypoxia (oxygen deprivation) and ischemic brain (lack of blood flow) injuries to the baby’s brain during delivery can cause permanent brain injury and mental disability or lead to the death of both baby and mother.
- Shoulder Dystocia
- Shoulder dystocia occurs when a baby’s shoulders fail to follow the baby’s head through the birth canal during labor and delivery. In these instances, the head is able to breach the mother’s pubic bone, but one of the shoulders is essentially stuck. If proper action is not taken, a case of shoulder dystocia can be extremely damaging to the mother and disabling to the baby.
- Skin and Soft Tissue Injuries
- A newborn’s skin can be injured during birth due to the medical tools used by the obstetrician. The fat beneath the skin of the newborn might also be harmed. Bruising and swelling are common signs of these injuries and might present on the body as elevated red spots.
- Bone Fractures
- Bone fractures in newborns are one of the most prevalent birth injuries. The collarbone and upper arm are two bones that are frequently damaged during delivery.
Common Birth Injuries to the Mother
- Many pregnant women are at risk of developing dangerously high blood pressure leading to conditions known as preeclampsia or pregnancy-induced hypertension (PIH). When doctors fail to recognize the symptoms of pregnancy-induced hypertension and preeclampsia, both mother and child are put at risk.
- Uterine Rupture
- A uterine rupture is a serious childbirth complication that can occur in a woman during vaginal delivery. Uterine ruptures occur when the uterus tears open and the baby slips into the mother’s abdominal cavity. A ruptured uterus can be life-threatening, leading to severe blood loss in the mother and the potential suffocation of the unborn child.
- A sepsis infection is a bacterial infection in the bloodstream that may occur after performing a cesarean section surgery. Delays in recognizing and treating sepsis can often result in permanent injury or death.
- Internal Organ Damage
- During a cesarean section, surgeons may act negligently and damage the mother’s internal organs. This can potentially lead to permanent physical impairment and death.
- Problems with Anesthesia
- Anesthesia mistakes can lead to things like low blood pressure, insufficient blood flow, lack of oxygen to the brain, and more. These errors commonly lead to permanent injuries or even death.
If Birth Injuries Occur from a Health Care Provider’s Negligence, Call the Birth Injury Attorneys at The Lawrence Firm Today
When you’ve been physically, mentally, or financially affected by medical misconduct that occurred during the birthing process, you have a right to take legal action to hold the responsible medical professional accountable and receive compensation for your losses. At The Lawrence Firm, our birth injury attorneys recognize the significant impact that wrongful birth injuries can have on you and your child’s life. As a result, we not only fight to make sure you receive compensation for things like medical bills and lost wages, but we also fight for compensation for the emotional injury that most birth injuries often cause.
If you or your child received a wrongful birth injury in either Ohio or Kentucky, we invite you to reach out to our experienced medical malpractice and personal injury lawyers in Covington and Cincinnati. Once we establish a formal attorney-client relationship, we will get straight to work on analyzing and researching your case, gathering all of the necessary evidence and documentation, calculating your damages, and making sure we get the lawsuit filed in a timely manner.
For a free evaluation of the confidential information regarding your case, call an experienced attorney at The Lawrence Firm today. You can reach us at our Kentucky law office at 859-578-9130, our Ohio law firm at 513-651-4130, or by filling out our online free consultation form below.
You Pay No Fees Unless We Win!
We are happy to offer a free consultation to evaluate your case. If you hire us as your legal counsel, we will represent you on a contingency-fee basis. You will pay no attorneys’ fees unless we recover financial damages.