The term birth trauma as it relates to infants refers to injuries that occur shortly before or during a baby's delivery or soon thereafter. There is another definition of birth trauma that concerns what the mother may experience related to the delivery of her child(ren). Unfortunately, child birth negligence on the part of medical professionals — a form of medical malpractice — is one of the causes of birth trauma suffered by newborns.
Examples of Birth Trauma Causes
For example, the individuals involved in the birth of a child (e.g., the obstetrician, nurses, anesthesiologists, midwives) may be guilty of medical malpractice. There are a myriad of ways that this medical malpractice occurs, including egregious instances such as:
- waiting too long to administer a necessary C-section, letting a baby suffer birth trauma
- handing off the delivery to an inexperienced member of the delivery team
- being away from the delivery setting for too long
- administering the wrong dose of medication, or the wrong medication
- using too much force with forceps or other surgical instruments
- delivering oxygen to mother or baby, in the wrong amount or at the wrong time
Birth Trauma and Cerebral Palsy
A common outcome of birth trauma is cerebral palsy , a term which covers an entire group of neurological disorders in infants and children. Child birth negligence can result in cerebral palsy, but cerebral palsy can also occur without any identifiable cause. There are three main types of cerebral palsy (CP), and each can be caused by birth trauma:
- Ataxic CP: an infant or child with ataxic CP has an inadequate sense of balance and depth perception
- Athetoid CP: uncontrolled, involuntary movements are the hallmark of athetoid CP
- Spastic CP: causes movement difficulties and stiffness
Is Your Infant's Injury Due to Birth Trauma?
If you suspect that the cause of your baby's injuries may be child birth negligence or some other form of medical malpractice, it's in your best interests to schedule a free consultation with a birth trauma lawyer who can help you. To schedule a free consultation, contact a qualified legal professional today.