Having a baby should be a joyous time, and for most parents, it is. However, there are also plenty of things that may cause anxiety or stress during birth and pregnancy. When complications arise, this can be an added stressor that takes away from the joy and happiness you should be experiencing.
Unfortunately, many injuries occur during birth, but there are also birth injuries that can take place before the baby is born. There are times when these injuries come from negligence during prenatal care or even during the birth process. When that is the case, you may have recourse for compensation for you and your baby.
If you or your baby were injured during birth due to negligence or malpractice, consider working with an Indianapolis medical malpractice lawyer to learn more about your options.
Birth Injuries Explained
Birth injuries can come in many different forms. The term typically refers to an injury to the baby. These injuries typically happen before, during, or right after delivery. They can be severe, depending on the situation. Minor injuries might include something like cuts and bruises, while a severe injury could be nerve damage, brain damage, cerebral palsy, or another severe issue.
A birth injury may be unavoidable, but there are also times that they stem from the improper use of prenatal drugs, improper use of medical equipment, medical malpractice, or failure to monitor the baby appropriately during labor and delivery.
Can Injury Happen Before Birth?
In most cases, injuries happen throughout labor and delivery, but there are times that injuries can occur before birth as well. When an injury occurs prior to birth, it typically happens anywhere from 38-40 weeks and the events that occur or fail to occur during care in this term.
Something as simple as the mother getting an infection during pregnancy could lead to injuries. Exposure to certain medications can also be the cause of birth and pre-birth injuries. If the injury results from provider negligence, you have options.
Medical Negligence and Birth Injury
How do you determine whether medical negligence is at play or could have caused the birth injury? In general, you’re looking for evidence that a physician, healthcare provider, or medical staff failed to provide the accepted standard of care, resulting in the injury.
Take a look at some of these examples:
- Improper treatment of medical conditions such as high blood pressure, pre-eclampsia, or infections.
- Failure to monitor fetal growth throughout pregnancy or track growth for low birth weight, premature birth, etc.
- Administering the wrong medicine, using the wrong dosage, or failing to recognize a medicine that could be harmful to the mother or baby.
- Not providing interventions in a timely manner, such as labor induction, c-sections, and more.
- Failing to provide adequate nutrition and advice to support the needs of the baby and mother.
- Not recognizing the warning signs of issues, like fetal distress, prolonged labor, abnormal heart rate, and others.
What is the Compensation for a Birth Injury Claim?
You will need to work with a lawyer to determine your options and how much compensation you may be eligible for after facing a birth injury. Birth injury cases can have claims for economic and non-economic damages in the state of Indiana.
When considering damages, economic damages typically refer to medical expenses, physical therapy costs, and costs of medication. If a caregiver is forced to miss work and experiences lost wages for recovery or taking care of the injured baby, this is also an economic damage. And should the child be permanently disabled, this should be considered as well.
Non-economic damages refer to emotional distress, stress, physical disfigurement, pain and suffering, and similar factors.
In order to receive compensation, there is a burden to prove negligence or medical malpractice that led to the injury. It will be necessary to gather medical documentation, statements, and anything else that may help support your case.
Lean on an Experienced Lawyer for Your Birth Injury Claim
If you’ve experienced the aftermath of a birth injury, you may have options. It is possible that your case is eligible for compensation. You are not alone. Working with an experienced and qualified Indianapolis medical malpractice lawyer is the best choice to learn about your options and get help with your case.