In some cases, medical personnel have failed to properly monitor newborn babies during and shortly after birth. Some risks of injury are evident immediately after birth. For instance:
- The color of the baby’s skin is pale or blue.
- The baby is breathing slowly or has a slow heart rate.
- The baby is lethargic.
- The baby struggles with feeding or shows no interest in feeding.
- The baby is experiencing seizures.
- The baby’s “Apgar” score is low (The “Apgar” is an evaluative tool that describes the newborn immediately after birth).
- The baby’s reflexes are weak.
In other cases, the injuries do not become apparent until later in childhood. Symptoms might include learning difficulties, seizures and many other serious conditions.
When delivery room doctors and hospital staff fail to follow the proper delivery room protocols and procedures, serious birth injuries can result. Common birth injuries include:
- Hypoxia refers to the lack of oxygen to the baby’s brain. Hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy (HIE) is a type of brain damage caused deprivation around the time of birth.
- Seizure disorders and epilepsy can be caused by birth injuries such as HIE, birth trauma, or infection.
- Irreversible brain damage.
- Premature and underweight baby.
- Cerebral Palsy, caused by an interrupted oxygen supply during birth.
- Spinal cord injuries.
- Paralysis of the face.
- Bleeding in the skull (Intracranial Hemorrhage).
- Broken bones.
- Injuries to the baby’s skull.
- Brachial Plexus injuries that can permanently damage the child’s shoulder or arm.
- Maternal injuries commonly caused during delivery by undiagnosed or improperly controlled bleeding.
- Shoulder dystocia.
- Brachial plexus palsy is an injury to nerves controlling arm and hand movement that can arise after a vaginal delivery with shoulder dystocia.
- Serious cephalohematomas can lead to complications such as jaundice and can be a sign of more serious birth injuries.
- Intellectual and developmental disabilities.
- Wrongful death.
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