Birth Injury Attorney in Philadelphia
It can be devastating to discover that your child has sustained critical birth injuries that contribute to serious and long-term disabilities. Unfortunately, a doctor’s negligence or other medical professional’s recklessness during the delivery process can lead to critical injuries that will impact your child for many years to come. What follows are some of the most common birth injuries:
Cephalohematoma refers to bleeding in the area between the bone and the fibers covering. It frequently appears several hours after birth and a clear sign of this can be a lump on the baby’s head. The body will then resorb the blood. Depending on the size of this condition, the majority of cephalohematomas take two weeks to a total of three months to completely disappear. If the bleeding area is large, the baby might also develop jaundice as the red blood cells breakdown.
Caput refers to severe swelling of the soft tissues around the baby’s scalp and this happens as the baby travels through the birth canal. While the swelling will frequently disappear in several days without any problems, it can still be alarming as a parent to discover this birth injury.
Forceps and Bruising Marks
When medical staff use forceps to deliver a baby, temporary marks or bruises could be left on the baby’s head and face. Babies delivered via vacuum extraction may also experience scalp laceration or scalp bruising.
This refers to small blood vessels breaking in the eyes of a baby. Your baby’s eyes could have a bright red band surrounding the iris. Although this is common and doesn’t cause damage to the eyes, the redness can last for up to ten days.
Pressure on your baby’s face during birth or labor can generate issues with the facial nerve. This can also occur if medical professionals use forceps during the delivery process. You will most frequently be able to identify this injury when the baby cries. The side of the face afflicted with the injury will have little or no movement and the baby will have difficulty closing the eye on this side as well. If your infant’s nerve was only bruised then the paralysis could improve over the course of time. Surgical repair may be necessary if the nerves were torn.
This occurs when the group of nerves supporting the arms and hands known as the brachial plexus is damaged. This is common when there is difficulty during the delivery process with the baby’s shoulder. The baby could lose the ability to rotate the arm or to flex. If the injury generated swelling and bruising around the nerves, movement could be regained after several months. Tearing of the nerve, however, could lead to permanent nerve damage.
Fracture of the Collar Bone or the Clavicle
Fractures during delivery and labor are unfortunately all too common. The clavicle can break when there is difficulty delivering the baby’s shoulder or in the event that you go through a breached delivery. A baby with a fractured clavicle will not be able to move the arm on the side of the break.
If you believe that your baby has been injured during the delivery process and that you have a medical malpractice claim against the medical professionals involved, consult with a Philadelphia birth injury lawyer as soon as possible.