A birth injury or infant death could have a devastating impact on your family and affect the way you live forever. If medical malpractice caused the harm, the feelings of anger and devastation could be overwhelming. Talking to a Schenectady labor and delivery malpractice lawyer as soon as possible following an act of malpractice may help you identify how medical staff violated their duty of care to you and your child.

A compassionate birth injury attorney could help you understand your legal rights and develop a strategy to pursue compensation.

Common Instances of Labor and Delivery Malpractice

To pursue a labor and delivery malpractice case on behalf of the plaintiff, the Schenectady attorney must establish that the actions of the physician, nurse, or other medical personnel were negligent and below the accepted professional standards of care. Several elements must be proven to confirm the existence of negligence such as:

  • A relationship must exist between the physician and the patient
  • The physician must have acted in a negligent manner, below the prudent best practices of the field
  • The doctor’s negligence caused the victim’s injury
  • The patient suffered direct harm as the result of that injury

Some of the most common labor and delivery injuries include:

Hypoxia

This is when the infant’s brain does not receive sufficient oxygen during birth. Some of the most common causes of hypoxia include infection, a tangled umbilical cord, or placenta damage. If the doctor does not notice the warning signs of hypoxia and take immediate action, the baby could suffer from long-term physical and mental handicaps.

Improper Use of Vacuum Tools

While vacuum tools are a common method to deliver a child who has become stuck inside the birth canal, serious injuries may occur if the physician does not use the vacuum tool properly.

Improper Use of Forceps

If the infant is in an awkward position, the mother’s cervix does not expand sufficiently, or the baby gets stuck in the birth canal, the doctor could be required to intervene with the aid of forceps. However, the physician must use the forceps with extreme care to avoid harming the child’s head, nerves, or chest, which might cause lifelong issues.

Unnecessary Delay to Perform a Cesarean Section

If the infant is in clear distress, exhibiting a low heart rate, or the mother’s blood pressure has elevated too high, the physician attending the birth should perhaps cease labor and delivery and opt for a Cesarean section. This is also the case if placenta previa, uterine rupture, umbilical cord prolapses, or slowed labor occurs. Failure to recognize when a Cesarean section is necessary could cause serious issues with the child’s health and development. In severe cases, it may even lead to fetal death.

Injuries Frequently Associated with Labor and Delivery Malpractice

Labor and delivery malpractice could cause numerous injuries to both mother and child such as bone fracture, brain injury, sterility, nerve damage, hemorrhaging, and even wrongful death. Other injuries frequently associated with labor and delivery negligence include:

  • Brachial plexus injury
  • Anoxia
  • Cerebral palsy
  • Shoulder dystocia
  • Erb’s palsy
  • Klumpke’s palsy
  • Horner’s syndrome
  • Subdural hematoma

Seeking Compensation in a Labor and Delivery Malpractice Case

Victims may pursue a range of damages including reimbursement for medical expenses, time lost from work, physical pain, and mental anguish. New York Consolidated Laws, Civil Practice Law and Rules, Article 2, Section 214-A establishes a two-and-a-half-year statute of limitations for labor and delivery malpractice cases.

However, when the victim of the malpractice is a child, an exception could apply. Under this exception, the statute extends for another 10 years following the negligent act, or until the child turns 28, whichever occurs first. A qualified Schenectady lawyer experienced in labor and delivery malpractice cases could evaluate the statutory limits applicable to a claim and ensure the suit is filed in time.

How a Seasoned Schenectady Labor and Delivery Malpractice Attorney Could Help

If you or your child sustain injuries from labor and delivery malpractice, a knowledgeable Schenectady labor and delivery malpractice lawyer could fight for financial compensation on your behalf. Contact the office to schedule an initial case evaluation and discover what legal recourse may be available to you.