Common Questions About Birth Injuries in Alabama
When a child suffers from a serious injury at birth, it can be one of the most agonizing experiences for the entire family. A birth injury could lead to long-lasting medical issues, struggles growing up, enormous medical bills and even limited opportunities as an adult.
Children suffering from birth injuries could require ongoing medical care, special education, and other accommodations. If you know or suspect that your child has a birth injury, here are some common questions and answers about these cases.
Q: How Frequently Do Birth Injuries Occur?
A: Unfortunately, various agencies classify birth injuries differently, with some labeling birth defects as injuries. However, the National Institutes of Health reports that 1.1 percent of cesarean deliveries alone result in irreversible birth injuries.
Q: What Are the Different Types of Birth Injuries?
A: Many different types of birth injuries can affect a child and impact a family long-term. The most common types of birth injuries include:
- Scalp injuries
- Fractured clavicle
- Brain damage due to lack of oxygen
- Cerebral palsy
- Cystic fibrosis
- Shoulder dystocia
- Brachial plexus injuries (Erb’s palsy and Klumpke’s palsy)
Q: Are Birth Injuries the Same Thing as Birth Defects?
A: Birth injuries are not the same thing as birth defects. Birth defects are the result of chromosome issues, genetic abnormalities, and environmental factors. These occur during pregnancy as the child is developing. Common birth defects include problems with the central nervous system, heart defects, and cleft palate. There are some birth defects, however, that have been linked to exposure to certain medications. Birth injuries are traumatic events that occur to the infant just before, during, or just after delivery.
Q: Are Birth Injuries Preventable?
A: Many birth injuries, by their nature, are preventable. At least 30% of all birth injuries result from communication errors between medical staff during the pregnancy and birth process. Other leading causes of preventable birth injuries are:
- Misdiagnosis of maternal or fetal distress
- Inappropriate use of medication
- Improper use of birth-assisting tools
- Delayed cesarean sections
- Umbilical cord problems
Q: Can Children Suffering From Birth Injuries Get Better?
A: This is a difficult question to answer. Some birth injuries, such as Erb’s palsy, may allow a child to recover within a few months to a few years. Severe cases, however, could last a lifetime. Other birth injuries, such as Cerebral Palsy, may limit your child’s mobility for the rest of their lives and require lifelong medical treatment. Whether your child will recover from their injury or not will depend in large part on the type of injury, how quickly it was discovered, and the type of medical treatment available.
Q: Should I Take Legal Action for My Child’s Birth Injury?
A: Sometimes, parents don’t want to get into an uncomfortable situation with their doctor or medical provider. However, if your child’s birth injury occurred due to negligence, it’s important that you raise the issue, both for you and your child, as well as for the safety of future patients. Another reason that you should pursue a case against a negligent medical provider is that you are entitled to damages for the harm done to your child. A birth injury can result in a lifetime of medical expenses and other accommodations, and a legal case is the best way to secure your child’s future.
Q: When is the Best Time to Pursue a Case for a Birth Injury?
A: If you suspect that your child has a birth injury or if your child has been diagnosed with a birth injury, it’s essential that you speak with an experienced Alabama birth injury attorney as soon as possible. You not only have a statutory time limit to file a claim, but it’s also important to collect evidence and interview witnesses before too much time passes. Acting quickly will maximize your chances of obtaining the outcome and compensation you deserve.
Birth injury cases require the expertise of an Alabama attorney that is well-versed in medical negligence litigation matters. The attorneys at the Law Office of J. Allan Brown, LLC not only have a track record of successfully pursuing Alabama birth injury cases, but they are also compassionate and relentless in fighting for their client’s rights. Contact us at 251.473.6691 or online now to schedule a free consultation.