Learning that your child has a birth injury is often devastating. Unfortunately, hundreds of parents in Northern New Mexico learn that their child has suffered a birth injury every year. The negligence of physicians and medical staff can cause harm to a baby before, during, or shortly after the birth process. Sadly, many birth injuries have a lasting impact on a child’s life.
If your child suffered a birth injury in Northern New Mexico, you may be entitled to financial compensation. At Hunt Law, we understand how to recognize when birth injuries are related to negligence. Contact our Northern New Mexico birth injury law firm today to schedule your initial consultation.
Why Choose Hunt Law for Your Birth Injury Claim?
Our founding attorney, Lee Hunt, is a father. He understands the desire parents have to provide the best care for their children. Hunt and his legal team work extremely hard to help parents of children who’ve suffered birth injuries obtain the compensation they deserve under New Mexico law.
If your child suffered a birth injury, you are likely burdened with expensive medical bills related to your child’s medical conditions. A successful birth injury lawsuit could help you and your family live in financial comfort so you can spend more time enjoying time with your child and less time worrying about medical bills.
Common Causes of a Birth Injury
Birth injuries can happen in an instant. Or, in some cases, they happen gradually in the womb. Birth injuries can happen during pregnancy or labor. Many birth injuries take place during the delivery of the baby or shortly after delivery. Whenever a medical professional is negligent during the childbirth process, the mother and child can suffer devastating harm. A wide range of birth injuries can result from medical malpractice, but the following examples are some of the most common and devastating birth injuries:
- Cerebral palsy
- Brachial plexus injuries
- Erb’s palsy
- Broken bones
- Facial paralysis
- Klumpke’s palsy
- Shoulder dystocia
- Brain hypoxia
- Bone fractures
- Caput succedaneum
- Perinatal asphyxia
- Perinatal asphyxia
- Intracranial hemorrhage
- Subconjunctival hemorrhage
- Spinal cord injuries
Doctors Owe Their Patients a Duty of Reasonable Care
Doctors and medical professionals owe their patients a duty to provide reasonable care. Because of their training and level of experience, medical professionals owe their patients a higher standard of care than other individuals. Obstetricians must provide the same level of care that a reasonable doctor with the training and skills of an obstetrician would use.
Obstetricians are reasonably expected to diagnose potential problems during the pregnancy that others may miss and treat the patient accordingly. The following are examples of birth injuries caused by the negligence of a medical professional:
- Using excessive force during the delivery, causing trauma
- Failure to perform a C-section when one is necessary
- Delaying a C-section for too long
- Delivering a baby prematurely
- Failure to diagnose and treat a maternal infection
- Failure to properly monitor the fetal heart rate
- Dropping the baby shortly after birth
- Failure to react to signs of fetal distress in time to prevent an injury
Diagnosing and Addressing Fetal Distress
Medical professionals need to monitor the mother and baby for signs of fetal distress. When a fetus is in distress, he or she could face deprivation of oxygen, which can cause brain injuries or even death. Obstetricians need to monitor patients for any of the following symptoms which could indicate fetal distress:
- Vaginal bleeding
- Decreased fetal movement
- Abnormal fetal heart rate, as indicated by a nonstress test or other fetal monitoring
- Abnormal volume of amniotic fluid
- Abnormal results on a Doppler flow study
- Excessive or insufficient maternal weight gain
Monitoring the fetal heart rate during delivery is extremely important. Any indication of a drop in fetal heart rate can indicate dangerous problems for the infant. Continuous fetal monitoring has become standard procedure for obstetricians, and it can be done through an external or internal fetal monitor.
Medical Malpractice Can Lead to Premature Births
The more premature the birth, the more risk that the baby will suffer lasting health complications. Premature infants often have weak immune systems, underdeveloped organs, and a greater likelihood of birth injuries, including neurological damage. In many cases, there is nothing doctors can do to prevent premature births. In other cases, doctors can prevent premature birth through medical intervention.
Obstetricians have a legal duty to monitor patients for conditions that can lead to premature births, such as preeclampsia, incompetent cervix, and gestational diabetes. For example, when doctors know that there is a chance that premature birth could happen, they should prescribe a cervical cerclage, progesterone, or magnesium sulfate.
Should it become obvious that there is no way to prevent premature birth, doctors and nurses must use the utmost care during the delivery of a premature infant. Only doctors with experience in premature births should handle the delivery.
Recognizing When Vaginal Births May Be Dangerous
The timing of a C-section can make a huge difference in the safety of the birth. When doctors wait too long to perform a C-section, the fetus could suffer distress. When a C-section becomes necessary, doctors need to go through with the operation as soon as possible. Possible indicators that a C-section may become necessary include uterine rupture, placenta previa, macrosomia, prolonged labor, and umbilical cord compression. Monitoring the mother and baby closely is essential. When doctors fail to conduct a C-section in time, birth injuries can result.
Why You Need a New Mexico Birth Injury Lawyer
Birth injury accidents are incredibly serious. Many injuries cause a lifetime of medical challenges for the child. Brain damage and nerve damage can cause a child to require various therapies, medical intervention, and possible full-time care. Insurance companies often try to avoid liability for damages caused by birth injuries, or they deny claims outright.
Whether you plan to file an insurance claim, or a birth injury lawsuit, you need an experienced lawyer on your side. Hiring a lawyer can help you protect your family’s rights, and demand the compensation you need for medical negligence.
Contact Our Birth Injury Attorney Today
Contact Hunt Law today and we can review your case and determine whether you can recover financial compensation. We can help give your family peace of mind by handling your birth injury medical malpractice claim.