A recent $2 milion birth injury verdict highlights the complications that can arise during deliveries, and the need for obstetricians and other staff to use due care. According to the medical malpractice lawsuit, a young woman presented to the hospital for an elective induced labor in December 2006. During the pregnancy, the mother had gained a substantial amount of weight, which is one of the risk factors for shoulder dystocia - the condition where a baby's shoulder becomes stuck behind the mothers pubic bone. Other risk factors for shoulder dystocia include where the baby is large, or where the mother is short or has a small pelvis.
Doctors are trained in how to address complications when an infants head become stuck, such as holding the baby's head and pulling downward. Unfortunately this is a dangerous maneuver and the risk of birth injury is high.
Additonally, physicians may attempt to use vacuum extraction. In the recent lawsuit, the infant's shoulder became stuck, and was delivered with the aid of vacuum extraction. A family doctor delivered the infant's shoulder and the child sustained injuries to the nerves that run from the middle of her spine to her right arm. As a result, the child has permanently limited range of motion in her arm.
The jury determined that the physician failed to act with the appropriate standard of care in this matter, and awarded the child and her family $2 million to cover past and future medical expenses, and provide care for her throughout her life. For more information, or if you believe that your child has suffered a birth injury as the result of negligent medical care, please contact the experienced Los Angeles birth injury lawyers at Bostwick & Peterson, LLP for an immediate consultation.