There are two main types of injuries that can occur during the birth/delivery process; which include, but not limited to, injuries from a lack of oxygen to the brain and injuries from some form of trauma. Lack of oxygen to the brain, known as hypoxia or asphyxia, can cause life-long disability, depending on the area of the brain affected and degree and duration of oxygen deprivation. The process of birth often causes a small reduction in oxygen supply to the brain and many babies are born with some evidence of asphyxia at birth, which is called birth depression. However, because of the reserve supply of oxygen and blood that is provided to the baby in the uterus through the placenta, most babies who are born with some depression at birth or hypoxia can be quickly and easily treated with some stimulation after birth and such babies rarely, if ever, suffer any significant injury to their brain.
There are several conditions which can cause more significant hypoxia or asphyxia at birth, and these can lead to more significant brain injuries. These include:
- Compression of the umbilical cord during labor and/or delivery
- Prolapse of the umbilical cord during delivery
- Separation of the placenta before delivery of the baby
- Rupture of the uterus
All of these conditions can present an obstetrical emergency which can result in requiring that the the baby be delivered quickly, usually by an emergency cesarean section. While most hospitals can perform a cesarean section within 30 minutes of the decision by the obstetrician for such surgery, these obstetrical emergencies often require a delivery within 15-20 minutes or less to prevent any significant brain injury in the baby.
The incidence of each of these obstetrical emergencies is considered rare at less than 5% of deliveries, but if such a problem does occur, the impact is serious, and the effects on the baby and the family can be emotionally and financially devastating for the rest of their lives.
If your child has suffered a brain injury due to any of these circumstances, please contact an attorney at The Cromer Law Group PLLC, for a FREE initial consultation to determine if you have a case for medical malpractice
Call us at 248-809-6790 (office) or 313-213-5875 (24-hours) to arrange for a free and confidential consultation.
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