When you seek medical help, you trust that you will get the care you need and deserve. However, patients occasionally suffer serious harm in the medical system—and injuries that occur during childbirth can be among the most devastating.

If you are dealing with the consequences of a birth injury, an experienced medical malpractice attorney could speak with you about pursuing compensation. Contact a Greenville birth injury lawyer to learn about the damages you can recover.

What Is a Birth Injury?

A birth injury consists of wounds that occur during any stage of pregnancy or just after a child is born. Claims arising from birth injuries involve complex medical and legal procedures.

Some birth injuries cannot be prevented, but medical negligence occurs more often than people may think. When medical negligence causes birth related wounds, victims can suffer permanent, and frequently severe, disabilities. These can include intellectual and developmental disabilities, seizure disorders, cerebral palsy, paralysis, blindness or impairment of vision or hearing, and other physical disabilities.

Common Causes of Birth Injuries

Errors a Greenville birth injury lawyer has seen can cause birth injuries include:

  • Failure to order appropriate prenatal tests
  • Failure to properly monitor the mother and the fetus during the pregnancy
  • Failure to recognize or respond to fetal distress, such as by ordering cesarean delivery
  • Misuse of drugs to induce or speed labor
  • Failure to guard against or react to infection
  • Failure to diagnose or treat placental abruption
  • Errors in the use of forceps or vacuum extraction during delivery
  • Failure to properly resuscitate the baby

A difficult delivery can contribute to birth injuries, and may occur when the birth canal is too small or the fetus is too large. Injury is also more likely when the fetus is positioned abnormally in the uterus before birth.

Defining the Failure to Monitor

Given recent advancements in ultrasonography and other technology for monitoring pregnancy, there is no excuse for medical errors that could have been prevented and lead to severe disabilities. Perinatal asphyxia is a common birth injury. The condition results when too little blood flows to the fetus’s or newborn’s tissues or when there is too little oxygen in the blood. Asphyxia can also occur if the function of the placenta is inadequate and the placenta cannot provide enough oxygen to the fetus during labor.

Proving Negligence

Medical professionals can be held liable for malpractice if the care they provide does not meet the accepted standards of care and diligence in their area of practice. These individuals present themselves to the general public as highly trained experts, and people trust them with their lives. As such, they should be held to the very highest standards.

Possible damages won in a birth injury case may include not just medical costs, but also compensation for loss of the child’s future income, loss of consortium (the deprivation of the benefits of a family relationship), and emotional distress.

Getting a thorough medical examination of both mother and baby is an important part of the process, so that a record can be established of just how much harm was done. Dealing with a birth injury can be heartbreaking, but having an experienced and aggressive legal team on your side may allow you to successfully fight for restitution. A passionate Greenville birth injury lawyer could assist you in your case by collecting evidence and mitigating on your behalf.