Blogs By K Ryan

What are common birth injuries in newborns?

woman worrying about types of birth injuriesIt’s devastating and frightening when a newborn suffers one of the many types of birth injuries. There may be life-long consequences for the baby and a heavy financial burden for the baby’s parents. However, when a birth injury occurs as a result of a medical professional’s negligence, the family may be able to file a medical malpractice lawsuit. 

There is a high standard of care expected from professionals in the healthcare community. A failure to meet that standard of care can have severe repercussions for the newborn and their family. If you believe your child’s birth injury resulted from medical negligence, contact our experienced birth injury lawyers today. 


Common types of birth injuries and conditions

Our legal team has worked with clients whose babies have suffered from various birth injuries. Some common types of birth injuries include:

  • Brain damage
  • Bleeding between the scalp and skull (cephalohematoma) 
  • Head trauma
  • Cerebral palsy
  • Erb’s palsy
  • Facial nerve injury 
  • Spinal cord injury  
  • Klumpke’s palsy 
  • Perinatal asphyxia 
  • Brachial plexus palsy
  • Shoulder dislocation 
  • Fracture of the collarbone

These injuries can lead to long-lasting consequences for the infant and a world of stress and worry for their parents. The parents will also have to face hospital expenses, treatment, therapy, and special equipment to care for the baby. 

Not to mention, parents may also experience pain and suffering and possibly lost wages from missing work to care for their child.


What causes birth injuries in newborns?

When a child suffers a birth injury resulting from medical negligence, there could be a variety of causes. Some common causes include:


Hypoxia occurs when a baby’s brain is not receiving enough oxygen. During childbirth, hypoxia can be caused by a damaged or infected placenta or when an umbilical cord gets tangled around the baby’s neck. When hypoxia goes unnoticed or unaddressed, the baby can develop severe disabilities. 


Improper forceps use: 

Several types of birth injuries, such as cerebral palsy, nerve damage to the baby’s neck, and fetal distress, are caused by improper use of forceps. If doctors aren’t extraordinarily careful, their use of forceps could lead to severe injuries.


Delaying a c-section: 

When a baby suffers from fetal distress, the doctor will often order an emergency C-section. When a doctor or other medical professional fails to recognize the urgent need for a C-section, their lack of attention may cause injuries to both the infant and mother. 


Failure to properly conduct prenatal testing: 

Even before a mother heads to the delivery room, a doctor’s negligence to properly conduct prenatal testing means they could miss a serious condition in the fetus that could lead to other injuries. 

While giving birth to a child should be one of the happiest days of a parent’s life, it can quickly turn into a traumatic event when a birth injury occurs. There is a wide range of causes of newborn birth injuries; all too often, these injuries happen because of a healthcare provider’s negligence. 


Schedule a Free Consultation with a Florida Birth Injury Lawyer Today

The experienced Florida birth injury lawyers at Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath understand the enduring physical, emotional, and financial trauma that a birth injury causes a newborn and their parents. When a birth injury occurs due to negligence or wrongdoing, the family deserves justice through financial compensation.

Numerous costs come with caring for a child who has suffered a birth injury. Our lawyers can assess your situation and determine whether your doctor or healthcare provider took the necessary steps to protect your child. If not, you may be able to recover damages from a birth injury lawsuit. 

Call our experienced lawyers today at 561-655-1990 to schedule a risk-free case evaluation. We look forward to hearing from you!


Improperly Informed: What To Do If The Risks Weren’t Fully Explained

informed consent claim

When Should You Make an Informed Consent Claim?

We trust medical professionals to inform us of the risks of medications, surgeries, and actions that affect our health. But what happens when our doctors, nurses, or pharmacists make a mistake that puts our lives at risk? In these cases, there can be significant impacts on our health and wellbeing. 

Are you or a loved one suffering from an injury that could have been avoided if you knew all the facts? Here’s how to decide whether you should make an informed consent claim when a medical professional fails to inform you about the risks of a medical procedure.


What is informed consent?

Informed consent occurs when your healthcare provider explains your illnesses, medical conditions, and treatment options to you. Since you base your decisions about treatments on this information, it is important that doctors and other medical professionals provide adequate detail. 

Without receiving information about your medical condition and treatment options, it is impossible to make informed decisions that can have long-lasting impacts on your health. If a physician fails to explain your conditions and the risks of specific treatment options, you may have grounds for a medical malpractice suit. However, not all failures to inform reach the level of medical malpractice.  


Do my physicians always need to provide informed consent?

Generally, physicians should always receive informed consent from their patients. However, the amount of information that someone needs to receive to give informed consent varies based on the procedure. 

For example, minor surgeries or common treatments that typically do not result in side effects usually require the least amount of information. On the other hand, major surgeries and operations, complex procedures, and even some tests may require a higher level of informed consent.

In addition, there are times where consent is not necessary or possible. This includes emergencies, where the physician must act quickly to preserve the life of their patient. Similarly, when a patient cannot understand their condition or the risks of a medical procedure, another decision-maker will need to decide on the patient’s behalf. It is important to understand the laws in your specific state when determining whether consent was necessary in your specific case.


How should medical professionals provide consent for specific treatments?

Doctors, nurses, and other medical professionals typically receive consent in two ways. First, they explain the patient’s condition and treatment options verbally. After explaining treatment options and the risks that come with those treatments, a physician may ask whether the patient agrees to a specific form of treatment. This is generally for conditions and treatment options that do not carry significant risks.

But what happens if your conditions and treatment options are potentially life-altering? In these events, you typically must receive a written document and sign this paperwork to provide consent. 

And what happens if you move forward with a medical procedure without knowing about the potential complications? Here’s how to tell whether your physician’s failure to inform you about the risks lead to a case of medical malpractice.


Identifying Failure to Inform and Provide Express Informed Consent

Failure to receive consent only happens when specific events occur. To decide whether you were the victim of medical malpractice, these things must happen:

  1.  You have a doctor-patient relationship with the individual that did not explain all the risks of a condition or treatment.
  2. The doctor, nurse, or medical professional did not provide information on the risks of a procedure or test, which any competent professional with a similar background would normally provide. This is known as the medical standard of care rule.
  3. Because you were not informed of all the risks of a procedure, you suffered an injury. You must be able to show that there was negligence by your medical professional in either giving the treatment or informing you of the risks.
  4. Due to this negligence, you are suffering from quantifiable damages. This could be in the form of additional medical care, pain and suffering, or even loss of life.


What are your next steps for making an informed consent claim?

It is important to act immediately if you suffer an avoidable injury because a medical professional did not inform you of all the risks. At Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath, we will help you understand your rights involving your medical malpractice case. We will help you gather evidence, build your case, and argue the facts in court so that you receive justice. 

Use the live chat option on our website to speak with a representative or schedule your consultation by phone at (561) 655-1990. Our consultations are at no cost nor obligation to you and your family. Speak with us today.

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