Shoulder dystocia is a birth injury that occurs when an infant’s shoulder becomes stuck in the birth canal during delivery. The medical team assisting the mother can carefully position the baby to complete the delivery without incident. If the medical team rushes or makes a mistake, though, the force of pulling the baby to complete the delivery can cause severe neck, shoulder, and arm injuries to the child.
If your child was born with shoulder dystocia, then it might be the direct result of a medical provider’s errors. The same is true if you suffered an injury during delivery due to your newborn’s misposition. Call (317) 245-3709 to connect with the Indianapolis shoulder dystocia lawyers of Christie Farrell Lee & Bell. We can investigate the situation, determine the cause of the birth injury, and create a claim capable of standing up to the harshest opposition.
What Causes Shoulder Dystocia?
Shoulder dystocia is a recognized and well-understood birth injury. Medical professionals have ample knowledge about what causes it and when it becomes more likely due to extraneous factors during a child’s birth. As such, doctors and nurses who assist a mother with the birth of her child should be ready to anticipate and avoid shoulder dystocia complications.
Risk factors that can make shoulder dystocia more likely include:
- Heavier-than-average newborn weight, especially in children heavier than 9 pounds, 14 ounces.
- Mother is a diabetic, especially in severe cases of diabetes.
- Vacuum extractor or forceps use to pull the baby through the birth canal.
If any of these risk factors are present during a child’s birth, then the medical team should be ready to carefully work around them. Failing to take any precautions can be considered medical malpractice if the child or mother is then hurt during the procedure.
Shoulder Dystocia Complications
Shoulder dystocia is a birth injury that can affect more than just the child’s shoulder. It can have a wide range of health consequences and complications, depending on what went wrong during the labor.
Shoulder dystocia complications can include:
- Brachial plexus injuries
- Permanent arm and shoulder disability
- Birth asphyxia
- Infant brain damage
- Infant clavicle or humerus fractures
- Lifelong breathing difficulties for the infant
- Umbilical cord compression
- Maternal hemorrhaging
Medical professionals need to react quickly to any signs of shoulder dystocia complications to preserve the health of the mother and her infant. Afterward, follow-up medical procedures must also pay attention to any signs of birth complications related to the shoulder dystocia to prevent further harm. Again, failing to take these steps and provide the mother and her newborn with adequate medical care can be considered medical malpractice in some situations.
For Responsive Legal Counsel, Call Now
The complexities of a shoulder dystocia birth injury case can be as numerous as they are challenging. Generally, medical providers and institutions have heightened legal protections to shield them from liability. It will take significant effort to overcome those advantages and prove your point—but it’s not impossible.
Team up with Christie Farrell Lee & Bell and our Indianapolis shoulder dystocia attorneys today. When you let us handle your case and act on your behalf, all our experience, insight, and resources become your own. You and your case will be prepared for anything the defendant and any involved insurance companies throw at you. While we build your case and argue for full compensation, you can focus on resting and taking care of your child.