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Estimated Fetal Weight & Birth Injuries

What Is Estimated Fetal Weight (EFW)?

There are different tests and evaluations that should be performed during pregnancy to determine if the mother and the baby are healthy. One important evaluation is assessment of the size of the baby. Both too-low birth weight and too-high birth weight are associated with an increased risk of complications during labor and during the post-delivery period. Potential complications include shoulder dystocia, brachial plexus injuries, and asphyxia (lack of oxygen) to the baby's brain and vital organs.

Estimating Fetal Weight

Estimated fetal weight (EFW) is usually found by ultrasound and/or by feeling the mother's abdomen. If the estimated fetal weight shows that the baby may be too large to safely pass through the birth canal, steps should be taken to prevent harm to the baby and the mother. When a baby weighs over eight pounds in the womb, there is a greater risk of injury during labor and delivery.

Shoulder dystocia can occur if one of the baby's shoulders gets stuck behind the mother's pubic bone during delivery. If the head delivers, but the shoulders do not follow, the baby can suffer injury to the nerves in the brachial plexus, resulting in Erb's palsy or Klumpke’s palsy. Shoulder dystocia can also result in inadequate flow of oxygen to the baby, causing asphyxia and brain injury.

Big Babies Versus Small Babies

A baby that weighs eight pounds or more is referred to as macrosomic. This is also sometimes called "big baby syndrome." It's the responsibility of the medical staff to assess the size of the baby, to recognize that the baby is too large to deliver vaginally, and to evaluate delivery by Cesarean section.

There are also risks associated with babies that are too small. Intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR) occurs when the fetal weight is below the 10th percentile for gestational age. When a baby has IUGR, it could be a sign that the intrauterine environment is not healthy, and the baby may need to be delivered. It is crucial for medical staff to recognize this serious problem as quickly as possible.

If You Need More Information About EFW Difficulties

Medical professionals have a duty and legal obligation to monitor the mother and the baby to detect warning signs or symptoms of conditions that could put them at risk during childbirth. Monitoring and correctly estimating fetal weight is an important part of this process. If your child has been injured as a result of mistakes made during labor or delivery, you can contact birth injury lawyer Laura Brown at Birth Injury Safety, sponsored by Birth Injury Safety, to better understand your child's legal rights. We are happy to provide a no-cost, free consultation to further explain these issues. We can be reached at (214) 974-4121.


Birth Injury Case Results

Gross Settlement/Verdict: $5,800,000.00

Injury: Oxygen Deprivation During Labor & Delivery Resulting in Brain Damage & Cerebral Palsy

  • A contingent (%) fee charged on the successful recovery resulted in a fee of $1,441,584 and $33,666.12 in litigation expenses which were reimbursed by the client out of the gross settlement amount.

Gross Settlement/Verdict: $3,250,000.00

Injury: Oxygen Deprivation During Labor & Delivery Resulting in Brain Injury & Cerebral Palsy

  • A contingent (%) fee charged on the successful recovery resulted in a fee of $1,300,000 and $81,511.14 in litigation expenses which were reimbursed by the client out of the gross settlement amount.

Gross Settlement/Verdict: $1,450,000.00

Injury: Oxygen Deprivation During Labor & Delivery Resulting in Brain Injury & Cerebral Palsy

  • A contingent (%) fee charged on the successful recovery resulted in a fee of $558,000 and $26,618.00 in litigation expenses which were reimbursed by the client out of the gross settlement amount.

>> View all Case Results

Note: If any of the cases listed here had been unsuccessful, the law firm would have paid all of the expenses for the case without being reimbursed by the client and would have received $0 dollars in attorney's fees.

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Birth Injury Safety
Saint Paul Place, Suite 1660A,
750 N. Saint Paul Street, Dallas Texas 75201

Phone: (214) 974-4121
Email: brown@trialfirm.com

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