Fetal Distress and Birth Injury Complications

Staff Writer | August 19th, 2013 | Posted in Cerebral Palsy Lawsuit News

birth injury lawsuitBirth injury malpractice lawyers can be an important resource for families with a child who has suffered a birth injury related to the effects of fetal distress.

Fetal distress occurs when your fetus indicates an abnormal heart rhythm, often as a result of an insufficient oxygen supply in utero, called hypoxia. Fetal distress and hypoxia during labor can lead to birth injuries and life-long complications, including cerebral palsy. Oftentimes, fetal distress is preventable or treatable, but if medical professionals do not notice the signs of distress or do not take immediate action, your child may suffer birth injuries as a result and your family may be able to recover compensation in a birth injury lawsuit.

What are the signs of fetal distress?

Signs and symptoms of fetal distress include changes in fetal heart rate, an insufficient oxygen supply in utero called hypoxia, decreased fetal movement felt by the mother, the presence of meconium in the amniotic fluid, and problems with the acidity of fetal blood or tissue as observed during medical tests.

What causes lead to fetal distress?

There are numerous causes and contributing factors to fetal distress, such as umbilical cord problems, fetal shoulder dystocia, an abrupted placenta, abnormal positioning or presentation of the fetus, fetal heart problems, multiple births, uterine rupture, maternal breathing problems, diabetes in the mother, maternal smoking, and liver disorders during pregnancy.

What injuries can result from improperly treated fetal distress?

If the signs, symptoms and causes of fetal distress are not properly identified and dealt with by doctors or hospital personnel, severe – yet possibly preventable – birth injuries may arise, including brain damage and cerebral palsy, which can cause speech difficulties, motor problems, limited movement, vision and hearing problems and learning disabilities. Erb’s Palsy may also result, which can cause nerve damage, numbness and paralysis.

Sadly, many of these life-altering birth injuries are preventable. During pregnancy, medical professionals have a responsibility to recognize red flags in the mother’s health that can lead to fetal distress and potential birth injury. During labor, doctors and medical staff must identify problems and take immediate steps to eliminate or greatly reduce fetal distress, such as performing an emergency Cesarean section, delivering the child immediately through the use of forceps or vacuum extraction, giving the mother more oxygen, or turning the mother onto her left side to increase blood flow to the fetus.

Consult with birth injury malpractice lawyers

If your child suffered a birth injury caused by doctors or hospital staff who were negligent in identifying or treating fetal distress, your family may be eligible to receive compensation for medical costs, pain and suffering and the effects on your child’s quality of life by filing a birth injury lawsuit.  In order to present a compelling case in court, it is important to retain birth injury malpractice lawyers with experience in litigating these types of complicated cases, who will be able to examine all of the labor and delivery data and medical records in order to detect any errors that contributed to your child’s birth injury.

At Balkin & Eisbrouch, we know that your child’s well being is your top priority. Our birth injury malpractice lawyers understand your fears and concerns, and recognize the challenges your family will face in the years to come. We urge you to reach out to us at 1-855-60-BIRTH in order to learn more about how we can help your family deal with the tragic effects of a preventable birth injury and whether or not your family could receive compensation by taking legal action.