Risks of Forceps Use

forcep delivery risks

Doctors and other medical professionals have varying levels of skill and experience when it comes to the proper usage of medical devices such as forceps. Hence, mistakes can and sometimes do happen.

Both a mother and her child can sustain serious and sometimes life threatening injuries if forceps are used in a negligent and improper manner. For a free review of your malpractice case, please contact Stern Law, PLLC by calling (800) 462-5772.

Fetal risks of forceps delivery

According to nationwide statistics, approximately one in every 664 babies who are delivered with the use of forceps suffers from birth injuries. Specifically, the types of birth injuries associated with the improper use of forceps are:

  • Head and brain injuries
    • Cerebral palsy
    • Hemorrhage and hematoma, including:
      • Subaponeurotic hemorrhage
      • Intracranial hemorrhage
      • Cephalhematoma
      • Subgaleal hematoma
    • Caput succedaneum – This refers to swelling of the soft tissues on your baby’s head and scalp. The condition is caused by pressure that is exerted on your baby’s head during a head-first vaginal delivery.
  • Neck injuries
    • Brachial plexus injuries, including:
      • Erb’s palsy – This is a primary example of an upper brachial plexus injury that results in the weakness and loss of movement in a baby’s arms and shoulders.
      • Klumpke’s palsy – This is a form of a lower brachial plexus injury that causes lesions in the lower brachial nerves; children affected by this condition typically have limited or no movement in the forearms and hands.
    • Sternocleidomastoid hematoma – This occurs when your baby’s head is twisted to one side during delivery, which leads to tightness in and the potential shortening of the sternocleidomastoid muscles. These muscles on your baby’s breastbone and collarbone connect a portion of the skull behind his or her ear. If left untreated, or in the most severe of cases, your child could be left with limited to no movement in his or her neck and also suffer from craniofacial abnormalities.
  • Nerve injuries
    • Cranial nerve injuries
    • Peripheral nerve injuries
  • Spinal cord injuries
    • Partial or complete paralysis
  • Bone injuries – This includes skull, cervical and neck fractures.
  • Bumps, bruising and lacerations on your child – This includes the face, head and shoulders.
  • Developmental delay

Can Forceps Or Vacuum Extraction Devices Cause Injuries Like Cerebral Palsy? from The CP Lawyer | Stern Law, PLLC on Vimeo.

Maternal risks of forceps delivery

Although forceps can cause serious injuries to a child during the birthing process, it is also worth noting that they can also cause you medical complications both during and after birth, such as:

  • Extensive vaginal tearing
  • Bruising or lacerations to the vagina
  • Post-partum problems with urinating or passing a bowel movement
  • Persistent post-partum pain

Stern Law, PLLC has assisted thousands of parents in their hour of need to pursue the justice and compensation they and their child deserve for many different types of medical malpractice. For a free consultation please contact us at (800) 462-5772. We would be privileged to take your call.

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