Chicago Birth Injury Lawyer
Chicago Birth Injury Lawyer
The experience should be joyous for the parents when a baby is born. However, for some families, the birth of their child is marred by tragedy resulting from a preventable birth injury during the labor and delivery process.
A medical professional should always administer the proper medical care regarding childbirth. When they do not provide adequate care to both the mother and the child by observing the risk factors of each scenario, preventable birth injuries occur.
Did your newborn sustain an injury due to negligence during the delivery process? Protect your legal rights and ensure you receive fair compensation for any birth trauma caused by medical malpractice.
The personal injury attorneys at Injury Lawyer Team, sponsored by Rosenfeld Law Offices, are legal advocates for injured victims harmed through the negligence of others.
Contact a birth injury lawyer to schedule a free consultation. All confidential or sensitive information you share with our legal team remains private through an attorney-client relationship.
National Birth Injury Statistics and Facts
National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) compiled National Birth Injury statistics to provide a national overview. Birth injuries happen during labor and delivery or soon after the baby is born.
Some birth injury cases are minor, but others can be serious, even life-threatening. The NCHS collects data on all types of birth injuries, including those during labor and delivery and those in the newborn period.
The NCHS released its latest report in 2020. According to the report, there were nearly 33,000 birth injury cases in the United States in 2018. That’s about 9 out of every 1,000 births.
- Medical errors are the leading cause of death in childbirth, and about 30% of all cases aren’t reported due to fear or lack of knowledge on what actions deserve attention following an injury.
- Injuries resulting from birth can cause consequences in long-term physical and cognitive disabilities for the child, which will demand ongoing medical treatment.
- The costs of caring for a child with a birth injury can be astronomical, even if it’s not a permanent injury, often totaling millions of dollars in medical bills over the child’s lifetime or until they can recover.
- Many cases are preventable if the medical professional takes appropriate precautions.
- These injuries can occur due to medical errors, fetal distress during labor and delivery, or problems with the baby after birth.
- Some common birth injuries include severe brain injury, spinal cord injury, and Erb’s palsy.
Pregnant women should ask their doctor about any risk factors associated with the birthing process for both the child and the mother and what can be done to minimize them.
Illinois Birth Injury Statistical Data
The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) collects data on birth injuries in the state. According to the IDPH, from 2010-2014, there were 1,717 birth injuries reported in Illinois.
Most injuries in Illinois occur during labor and delivery. These injuries can include damage to the baby’s head and brain, cuts and bruises, and problems with breathing and swallowing.
The most common type of birth injury in Chicago was fractures, which accounted for 41% of all injuries. Brain damage and spinal cord were the second most common, accounting for 29% of all injuries.
These injuries can be emotionally devastating for parents and caregivers and leave them overwhelmed and alone. However, families can successfully cope with and manage these serious injuries with the right support system.
Common Causes of Birth Injuries
Most babies are born without problems, but the birth process can sometimes result in an injured child. Injuries can occur when the baby’s head or body is squeezed through the birth canal, which causes fetal distress.
It can also happen if the baby’s head is stuck in the birth canal or when the umbilical cord is wrapped around the baby’s neck. In this last scenario, the umbilical cord can cut the oxygen supply of the baby, which can result in a child’s brain injury.
Usually, birth injuries occur during birthing when a baby’s head or body is squeezed into the mother’s pelvic bones, and the baby goes through the birth canal. If not done correctly, it can cause bruising, cuts, broken bones, brain damage, and spinal cord injuries.
According to Johns Hopkins Medicine, the most common causes are:
- Fetal distress: When a baby experiences distress in the womb, it can lead to difficulties during delivery. It may cause the baby to be born too early or too late, which is when a birth injury occurs more often.
- Vacuum extraction: When a baby is difficult to deliver, a doctor may use a vacuum extractor to help pull the baby out, which can sometimes cause injury to the baby’s scalp or skull.
- Forceps delivery: Similar to vacuum extraction, forceps delivery is used when a baby is difficult to deliver. However, doctors use forceps: a pair of metal tongs- instead of a vacuum extractor: to pull the baby out. It can also cause injury to the baby’s scalp or skull.
- Cesarean section: A cesarean section is when a doctor delivers a baby through abominal surgery. It is often done when a vaginal delivery is impossible or it would be too dangerous for the mother or baby. A child’s birth injury can occur in a cesarean section as in vaginal delivery. Common injuries are cuts and bruises.
- Cesarean breech presentation: A breech presentation is when the baby is positioned so that its feet or buttocks are coming out first instead of its head, which can increase the risk for injuries such as broken bones, cuts, and spinal cord injuries.
- Premature birth: Premature babies are born before 37 weeks gestation. Premature babies risk many health problems, including brain damage, spinal cord injuries, or other serious injuries.
- Low birth weight: Babies who weigh less than 5 pounds 8 ounces at birth are considered low-birth-weight babies. Low-birth-weight babies are at risk for many health problems and should be specially cared for when they’re born to prevent a child’s injury from developing.
- Congenital abnormalities: Congenital abnormalities are defects that are present at birth. These abnormalities can increase the risk of a child’s birth injuries.
- Multiple births: Twins, triplets, and other multiples are more likely to experience injuries during delivery than single babies. It is because they are often born premature or with low birth weight.
- Maternal health conditions: Some maternal health conditions can increase babies’ risk for birth injuries. Conditions such as high blood pressure, diabetes, and obesity can all lead to problems during labor and delivery. Prenatal care is especially important for those moms.
- Maternal age: Older mothers are more likely to experience complications during labor and delivery than younger mothers, increasing the risk for babies’ injuries.
- Infection: If an infection occurs during pregnancy, labor, or delivery, it can lead to severe complications for both mother and baby. Infection can increase the risk of a serious birth injury, such as brain damage and newborn sepsis.
Type of Birth Injuries from Medical Malpractice
Birth injury cases can be caused by medical malpractice, negligence on the part of medical professionals, or factors such as a difficult birth or delivery that is not handled appropriately by the healthcare team. According to the Mayo Clinic, some of the most common birth injuries are:
- Brachial plexus injury: Occurs when nerves near the shoulder are stretched or torn during birth. Symptoms include weakness in the arm, hand, or shoulder, numbness or tingling in the arm or hand, difficulty raising, and a dropping of the arm.
- Cephalohematoma: A blood collection between the skull and scalp that can occur when the baby’s head is squeezed during delivery. Symptoms include a swollen and tender head, bruising on the scalp, and a headache.
- Caput succedaneum: This scalp swelling can occur when the baby’s head is squeezed during delivery. Symptoms include a swollen and tender head and bruising on the scalp.
- Forceps marks: These are bruises or scrapes on the baby’s face that can occur when forceps are used during delivery.
- Perineal tear: This is a tear of the skin between the vagina and anus that can occur during childbirth. Symptoms include pain, bleeding, and the feeling of something coming out of the vagina.
- Meconium aspiration: Occurs when meconium, the first stool of a newborn baby, is inhaled into the lungs. Meconium aspiration can cause breathing problems, pneumonia, and sepsis (a life-threatening infection).
- Erb’s palsy: This is a condition caused by nerve damage in the shoulder that can occur during birth. Symptoms include weakness in the arm, hand, or shoulder, difficulty raising the arm, and dropping the arm.
- Klumpke’s palsy: This is a condition caused by nerve damage in the hand and wrist during birth. Symptoms include weakness in the hand and wrist, difficulty grasping objects, and numbness in fingers.
- Hydrocephalus: An accumulated fluid on the brain that is an injury that occurred shortly after birth or later in life. Symptoms include a large head size, vomiting, seizures, and poor feeding.
- Intracranial hemorrhage: Bleeding inside the skull can occur shortly after birth or later in life. Symptoms include permanent brain damage, seizures, vomiting, poor feeding, and irritability.
- Congenital heart defects: These heart structure abnormalities are present at birth. Congenital heart defects can cause problems with blood flow through the heart, leading to serious health problems later in life.
If your child has suffered birth injuries because of a negligent medical professional, contact our affiliated Chicago birth injury attorneys for a free consultation.
They have the expertise and will guide you through the process of a medical malpractice lawsuit as seamlessly as possible, so you can look after what matters most.
The Effects of Cerebral Palsy by Medical Errors
Cerebral palsy is a neurological disorder that affects movement and posture. It can occur during pregnancy, labor, or delivery causing birth trauma. The condition is usually a permanent disorder and affects about 1 in 500 children in the United States, making it one of the most common childhood disabilities.
- Boys are more likely to be affected than girls. Some possible causes include infection, head injury, or lack of oxygen to the child’s brain during the birthing process.
- This neurological disorder results in many symptoms affecting movement, coordination, and muscle tone. According to the Cleveland Clinic, cerebral palsy symptoms vary from person to person.
- Some common cerebral palsy symptoms include difficulty with movement, impaired balance and coordination, and problems with posture and walking.
- Many people with cerebral palsy also experience seizures, intellectual disabilities, and vision or hearing problems.
- There is no one-size-fits-all treatment for the condition, and the best approach for each individual depends on the specific symptoms involved. However, various therapies and interventions are available to help people with cerebral palsy maximize their independence and quality of life.
- Support services and resources are also available to help families cope with the challenges of living with a child who has cerebral palsy.
- There is no cure for cerebral palsy, but many people lead healthy, active lives. Early diagnosis and intervention are crucial in helping a child who suffers from this condition so they can reach their full potential.
- The medical condition does not worsen over time, but specific symptoms may become more pronounced as a person ages.
For more information on cerebral palsy symptoms and treatment options, please visit the websites of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) or the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS).
Why Brachial Plexus Birth Trauma Is a Common Birth Defect
Each year, more than 1,500 infants in the United States are born with a child’s birth brachial plexus injury, making it one of the most common birth defects. The brachial plexus is a network of nerves that extends from the neck to the shoulder, and its damage can cause a wide range of problems, including weakness, paralysis, and pain.
While birth can potentially result in a brachial plexus injury, it is most commonly caused by complex or protracted deliveries.
- Brachial plexus injuries can cause a wide range of symptoms, including weakness in the arms and hands, numbness or tingling in the fingers, and pain.
- The most common symptoms of a brachial plexus injury are weakness and lack of muscle control in the arm and hand.
- A brachial plexus injury can also cause pain, tingling, or numbness in the arm or hand.
- Various things, including birth trauma, can cause an injury on the brachial plexus.
- A brachial plexus injury can often be treated with surgery.
- It is essential to seek treatment for a brachial plexus injury as soon as possible to prevent further damage.
- Brachial plexus injuries can range from mild to severe and cause long-term problems if not treated properly.
- Many treatments are available for brachial plexus injuries, including surgery and medication.
Early diagnosis and treatment are crucial to preventing long-term damage from a brachial plexus injury. If your child is experiencing any of these symptoms, it is essential to see a doctor immediately.
Fortunately, most brachial plexus injuries are mild and resolve independently within a few months. However, surgery may be necessary to restore function for those who don’t heal properly.
In some cases, the injury is so severe that amputation may be the only option. That’s why it’s important for expectant mothers to be aware of the risk of brachial plexus injuries and to take steps to avoid them if possible.
If you suspect the injury occurred due to medical malpractice, contact a birth injury attorney to help you understand the situation and how to best proceed in your birth injury case.
Why Families of Birth Accident Victims File a Birth Injury Lawsuit
A birth injury lawyer from our law offices recommends families of birth accident victims file a birth injury lawsuit to ensure they receive the justice and fair compensation they deserve. Birth injuries can cause physical, emotional, and financial hardship for victims and their families and often occur due to the negligence of medical professionals.
Below are eight reasons to file a birth injury lawsuit:
1. To get the medical care your child needs
Medical expenses related to birth injuries can be costly, and a birth injury claim can help cover these costs.
2. To obtain compensation for your child’s pain and suffering
Birth injuries can cause immense pain and suffering for victims, which should be compensated. Our experienced birth injury attorneys will file a medical malpractice claim on your behalf to obtain compensation for your child’s birth injury.
3. To cover lost wages when mom or dad can’t return to work after the birth
Victims of birth injuries may miss work to care for their injured child, leading to lost wages. A birth injury claim can help recover these losses.
4. To hold the hospital or doctor responsible for their negligence
Many birth injuries are preventable with proper care but often occur due to the negligence of hospitals or medical professionals. Birth injury lawsuits against the responsible doctor and hospital can help ensure these individuals are held accountable for their actions.
5. To ensure other children don’t suffer from preventable birth injuries
By holding negligent medical professionals accountable with medical malpractice lawsuits, we can help ensure that other children don’t suffer from preventable birth injuries in the future.
6. To make sure your child gets the best care possible now and in the future
By filing a lawsuit, you can ensure that your child receives the best possible care now and in the future. It includes appropriate medical treatment as well as any necessary therapy or rehabilitation.
7. To send a message that medical negligence will not be tolerated
By filing a medical malpractice lawsuit, you’re sending a message that medical negligence will not be tolerated and that medical malpractice will be held accountable. It may help discourage others from acting negligently when caring for pregnant women and newborns.
8. To make sure birth injury cases don’t happen to other families in the future
By filing a lawsuit, you can make sure similar accidents don’t happen to other families in the future. It can help raise awareness about preventable birth injuries and promote change in the healthcare industry so fewer children are injured during childbirth.
How Chicago Birth Injury Attorneys Can Help
If a child suffers a birth injury, a Chicago birth injury lawyer from our Law Offices can help resolve these birth injury claims to get compensation. Our birth injury lawyers have experience in birth injury litigation and can provide the necessary resources to help you endure this process. A birth injury attorney will:
- Determine whether you have a birth injury case and what damages you may be entitled to receive.
- Negotiate with insurance companies on your behalf.
- Represent you in court if your case goes to trial.
- Help you access medical care and therapy.
- Advise you on handling your medical malpractice claim and what to expect from a birth injury litigation.
- Help you file a lawsuit within the statute of limitations.
- Gather evidence and build a case for trial, including your medical records.
- Negotiate a settlement with the birth injury lawyers representing the hospital or the doctor.
- Explain your legal options and guide you through the process.
- Advocate for your rights in court and negotiate a fair settlement agreement.
- Help you receive the financial compensation you need and deserve for your injuries
Our specialized birth injury attorneys are equipped to help you handle this harrowing situation and get the best possible outcome.
Prenatal Care, Delivery, and Physical/Occupational Therapy When a Child’s Birth Injury Resulted in Devastating Birth Injuries
When a pregnant woman or her child suffers a birth injury, the road to recovery is often long and challenging. Birth injuries can cause physical, cognitive, and emotional damage that requires specialized medical care and assistance.
Victims of birth injuries may require extensive help from a physiotherapist, cognitive therapy, and emotional support to regain as much function as possible.
The days, months, and years after a birth injury can be filled with challenges for the victim and their caregivers. Families must often navigate a complex healthcare system to get the best care for their loved ones.
The financial burden of caring for a child with a birth injury can be overwhelming, which is one of the reasons that birth injury claims are necessary to recover damages to properly care for your baby.
A child’s birth injury can result in devastating health issues. Some common prenatal care, delivery, and physical/occupational therapy procedures that can help prevent or minimize these injuries include:
- Taking folic acid supplements before and during pregnancy.
- Receiving regular prenatal care checks from a doctor or midwife.
- Planning for a natural delivery whenever possible.
- Avoiding an episiotomy unless medically necessary
- Practicing perineal massage in the weeks leading up to labor.
- Avoiding forceful pushing during labor
- Allowing the baby to crown and deliver slowly.
- Supporting the baby’s head and neck as they are born.
- Minimizing the use of vacuum extractors or forceps during delivery.
- Providing immediate therapy treatments to the newborn after birth.
- Encouraging parents to seek specialized therapy if needed.
- Continuing therapy until the child reaches their full developmental potential
Despite the challenges, however, there is hope. Families who receive the appropriate care and support can often help restore their child’s health and quality of life.
How Long You Have to File A Birth Injury Claim Under Illinois Law
Under Illinois law, the statute of limitations on filing a birth injury lawsuit is two years. It means you have two years from the date of the injury to file any birth injury lawsuits. This time limit is essential to follow because you may lose your right to sue forever if you do not file a lawsuit within this time frame.
However, there are some exceptions. If the child is not yet two years old, the parents may file a lawsuit until the child’s second birthday. If the child is mentally incompetent, the parents have two years from when the child becomes incompetent to file a lawsuit.
It is also crucial to know that the statute of limitations differs depending on the birth injury the mother or child suffered.
If you are unsure when the statute of limitations expires in your case, it is best to ask the attorney during the free consultation. They may access to your medical records and can tell you exactly the time frame you have to file a lawsuit.
Birth Injury Recovery: What Happens After Treatment?
When a baby is born, there is a risk of injury. Some injuries are more severe, such as a birth injury that results in permanent brain damage or cerebral palsy, which is a condition that affects movement and muscle tone. A child with this brain injury may have difficulty walking, talking, or eating.
There is no cure for most brain injuries, but treatment can help a child manage the condition. Treatment may include physical therapy, medication, and surgery.
Some babies who have suffered a brain injury during birth may require lifelong care. Families with a child with a birth injury often need support groups or counseling to help them cope with the challenges they face with their child’s birth injury.
The family will also need to adjust to the new normal. Thankfully, with the help of doctors and therapists, most children with brain injuries can lead happy and productive lives.
Birth Injury Resources: Where Can Victims Find Help?
If you or your child has suffered a birth injury, it is vital to seek medical help immediately. You may also want to consider seeking legal assistance.
To find more information on injuries resulting from negligence at birth and how to seek legal help, visit the following resources:
Receive a Free Consultation and Hire Chicago Birth Injury Lawyers to Resolve Your Compensation Claim
Does your baby have a preventable birth injury caused by medical negligence? Do you want medical professionals held responsible for causing your damages by legally and financially holding them accountable for current and future medical expenses?
The personal injury attorneys at Injury Legal Team specialize in accidents involving negligence or intentional acts by others. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation.
Our legal team accepts all personal injury cases and wrongful death lawsuits on a contingency fee basis. This agreement ensures you pay no upfront fees until your case is resolved through a negotiated settlement or jury award.
All confidential or sensitive information you share with your attorney remains private through an attorney-client relationship.