Tulsa Birth Trauma Attorney
No two birth experiences are identical. Physicians and practitioners must undergo special training and education to be prepared for any complications that could happen during a birth. A physician that is ill prepared, incompetent, careless, or negligent during childbirth can make mistakes that result in birth trauma to mother and baby, with or without complications. If you are the victim of birth-related injuries in Tulsa, our experienced personal injury attorneys can help.
Birth-Related Medical Malpractice
Birth trauma can refer to physical or emotional trauma to the mother or baby during labor and delivery. It may refer to post-traumatic stress disorder that mothers experience after a frightening or bad birth, or to physical harms to the infant. Not all birth traumas arise out of negligence. Sometimes a birth is simply traumatic in its own right, even if all involved parties performed their duties with care and compassion. It is preventable birth traumas that define medical malpractice. Examples may include:
- Scalp swelling (caput succedanium). This can result from improper use of vacuum extraction tools during delivery.
- Fractures. The baby may suffer broken bones, if the doctor misuses birth-assisting tools, or tugs an infant too roughly during delivery.
- Brachial plexus injuries. Injuries to the bundle of nerves in the baby’s shoulder can affect the baby’s use of the arm and hand. Improper birthing techniques when a baby’s shoulder lodges in the birth canal can cause these injuries.
- Oxygen deprivation. Failure to monitor the infant’s vital signs can make a physician miss signs of something cutting off the baby’s oxygen supply to the brain. Failure to remedy this issue quickly can result in cerebral palsy, brain damage, and other complications.
- Maternal blood loss. A doctor may negligently fail to control excessive blood loss in the mother after delivery, leading to issues such as loss of consciousness and death.
Although somewhat rare, traumatic injuries to mothers and infants during childbirth do occur. Parents can sue for injuries to a child that arise out of negligence or malpractice, such as a doctor’s incompetence or misuse of tools. A mother can also sue for her own injuries, including undiagnosed preeclampsia, wrongful birth, wrongful pregnancy, or emotional distress. If mother or child passes away from birth traumas, surviving family members may be able to bring a wrongful death lawsuit.
What Is Your Birth Trauma Claim Worth?
Most traumas that occur during labor and delivery will not cause permanent damage to mother or child. If an injury does result in a lifelong disability, such as cerebral palsy or brain damage to the baby, parents may sue for the child’s lifetime of medical expenses and other losses. Even if the injury isn’t permanent, parents may be eligible for compensation for medical bills, pain and suffering, and lost quality of life.
Oklahoma caps pain and suffering damages available in medical malpractice claims. Parents can receive no more than $350,000 for these damages, regardless of how badly the birth injury affected the family non-economically. The only exceptions are if the case involves wrongful death, or if the defendant acted with gross negligence, reckless disregard for others’ safety, fraudulent intent, or intent to cause harm. For more information about what your birth trauma case could be worth, contact our Tulsa team online or at (918) 935-2777.