Birth Injury FAQs
At Birth Injury Safety, we understand how heartbreaking severe birth injuries can be. Below we have provided answers to commonly asked questions about birth injuries.
A: As reported on Medscape, an average of 6 to 8 significant birth injuries occurs in every 1,000 live births.
A: Not all birth injuries are preventable. At least 30% of all birth injuries result from communication errors between doctors and medical staff about the medical histories and health information of patients. Other leading causes are failure to diagnose fetal or maternal distress and hospital negligence. Birth injuries resulting from these causes could certainly have been prevented.
A: Birth defects are physical or biochemical abnormalities present at birth that may be inherited or caused by environmental factors. These are minor or serious problems that develop while the baby is still in the womb. One out of 33 babies is born with some type of birth defect.
Birth injuries are damage to the infant that occurs during, just before, or just after birth.
A: Birth is a traumatic experience, and many infants suffer minor injuries in the process, most of which resolve on their own without treatment. However, serious injuries to the child sometimes occur during birth, many of which could have been prevented. As reported in the Merck Manual, common birth injuries include:
- Head and brain injury
- Nerve injury
- Perinatal asphyxia (injury to the fetus or newborn from too little blood flow or not enough oxygen in the blood around the time of birth)
- Bone fractures during delivery -- clavicle (collar bone), humerus (upper arm bone), or femur (upper leg bone)
- Skin and soft tissue injuries
A: Mechanical risk factors, such as compression and traction, can cause injury to the infant during the process of birth. Risk factors for birth trauma include:
- Large-for-gestational-age infants, particularly those weighing more than 4,500 g (9.92 lb)
- Breech vaginal deliveries
- Excessive or abnormal traction during delivery
- Instruments used in delivery, particularly forceps and vacuums
A: No, not all birth injuries could have been prevented. For example, the larger nerves in the baby’s arms can be stretched and injured with a difficult delivery of a large infant. Another example is perinatal asphyxia resulting from pressure on the umbilical cord. Neither example is directly the fault of a medical provider, but medical providers should be on the lookout for exactly these things.
Q: What should I do if I suspect that my child’s birth injuries are the result of medical negligence?
A: If your child suffered serious birth injuries that you suspect could have been prevented if medical professionals had performed as they should, the best thing to do is to speak with a birth injury lawyer, sooner rather than later. Medical errors are a leading cause of injury and death in the U.S. Our compassionate lawyers at Birth Injury Safety will be happy to speak with you about your child’s injuries in a free case consultation. Contact us at (214) 974-4121.
A: A life care plan is a written statement that estimates the amount needed to cover all present and future costs in taking care of a birth injury victim—both physically and emotionally. A good plan will predict medical procedures needed, therapy costs, special education, mental or emotional distress to the parents, and more.
Birth Injury Video FAQ's
Video: "Why Laura Brown Handles Birth Injury Cases"
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