The birth of a child is an exciting and joyous time for parents and loved ones. The joy that childbirth brings, however, can quickly turn to anxiety and pain when a baby is born with a brain injury such as severe brain damage. Understandably, parents want answers. What happened to their child? How could this have been prevented?
Infant brain injuries can occur at any point during pregnancy, labor, delivery, or following birth. Although regular fetal monitoring and compliance with numerous safety protocols can prevent a great number of birth injuries, cases of brain damage can still occur at the hands of a negligent medical professional or healthcare provider.
Babies born with brain damage or other types of brain injuries may require constant and long-term care, altering the quality of life of both the child and the child’s family. More often than not, infant brain damage can result in physical deformities, intellectual and learning disabilities or other developmental delays as they grow, regardless of how minor the injury may appear. Even if the damage is considered treatable, the brain may take several years to restore itself to its normal or optimal condition.
Causes of birth injuries and brain damage
It can be difficult to believe that it is still possible for there to be a lack of standard care when it comes to the delivery of a baby, especially given the developments in birthing options and medical care. However, studies from the Brain Injury Association of America and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show that traumatic brain injuries are among the primary causes of permanent disabilities and fatality in infants and children.
Mistakes continue to happen despite everyone’s best efforts and intentions for a successful birth. Some common causes of brain damage and other birth injuries include:
- Delaying an emergency C-section
- Prolonged or difficult labor
- Improper handling or using excessive force during labor and delivery
- Lack of oxygen during labor and after delivery
- Inaccurate projection of the baby’s size
- Failing to identify or monitor gestational diabetes
- Failing to identify or treat signs of fetal distress
- Failing to identify or treat umbilical cord complications
- Breech birth
- Unnecessary and negligent surgery
Signs and symptoms of brain damage at birth
Many signs and symptoms of brain damage can be detected simply by looking at the infant’s appearance shortly after birth. While not always present in infants suffering from brain damage, some common signs and symptoms include:
- Unusually large forehead
- Abnormally-shaped spine
- Unusually small head
- Distorted facial features
- Seizures 24 to 48 hours after birth
- Blue-colored skin
- Neck stiffness
- Difficulty in focusing eyes
Infants suffering from brain damage may also show uncharacteristic temperament. Some symptoms include:
- Sucking or feeding problems
- Excessive crying
- Excessively fussy for no reason
- Difficulty sleeping while lying down
Expenses associated with infant brain damage
It can be very difficult to predict what your child will experience as every case of brain damage is different. While some children may be able to heal without suffering any permanent impairment, others may sustain extensive and life-long injury.
Depending on the severity of the birth injury, some examples of expenses associated with brain damage include:
- Pain medication
- CT scans, MRIs and X-rays
- Adaptive equipment
- In-home care expenses
- Speech therapy
- Physical and occupational therapy
- Psychiatric support
The expenses associated with caring for a disabled or injured child can be overwhelming, and is often much higher than what the average family can afford. An experienced birth injury lawyer from The Fitch Law Firm can help you obtain compensation for damages such as medical expenses, rehabilitation costs, lost wages, physical and emotional pain and suffering, as well as punitive damages.
Compassionate birth injury lawyer ready to help
Brain damage and other birth injuries are devastating to deal with, and can often result in extreme emotional and financial stresses for the child’s parents and loved ones. The Fitch Law Firm understands the enormous responsibility involved with conducting a thorough investigation of birth injury cases. While no amount of monetary compensation can reverse the damage already done, we will work tirelessly to hold the responsible parties accountable for their negligent actions, and help you obtain the compensation needed to have your child’s medical needs addressed at the soonest possible time.
If you have reason to believe that a birth injury such as brain damage to your child resulted from the negligence of your medical professional or health care facility during your pregnancy, labor, delivery or following birth, call a medical malpractice lawyer in Ohio immediately. At The Fitch Law Firm our experienced, compassionate, and aggressive legal team will stand up for your rights and protect your best interests.
We are here to fight for you and help you get the justice you deserve. Call The Fitch Law Firm at 855-LAW-OHIO or fill out our online consultation form to schedule a free consultation with an Ohio birth injury attorney.