Not Every Birth Injury is Obvious

As part of our work connecting parents with a wide variety of helpful resources aimed at helping children with Cerebral Palsy, we hear a wide range of stories about how the child’s brain injury occurred. Just as some have a very clear ‘smoking gun’ of sorts based upon an infection, obvious medical error, traumatic delivery, etc., others aren’t so clear. The honest truth that parents must acknowledge in order to preserve their child’s legal rights is that just because there’s not an immediately obvious sign of problems in the pregnancy or delivery does not mean that a critical error during you and your child’s care did not take place. In short, unfortunately, not every birth injury is obvious.

First, the basics: the improper use of tools like forceps or a vacuum can result in significant bruising and harm that most any parent can acknowledge as an element of their child’s brain injury. When a baby is delivered with poor color, not breathing, needing an extended NICU stay, etc., parents have an idea ‘something’s wrong.’ However, there are also some subtle cues that cannot be ignored; just because an emergency was not made evident to you does not mean that a real, very concerning event did not take place. In some instances, that event could have been preventable.

Cerebral Palsy has a wide range of causes, but some of the most alarming are those which are due to a failure on the part of medical professionals to follow industry standards and adequate care. The presence of meconium is just one of a number of red flags that require immediate action; if a child’s first bowel movement, sometimes caused by distress in the womb, is inhaled or otherwise ingested following delivery, very dangerous implications can exist. One of those implications is the failure to breathe properly, resulting in asphyxia and, subsequently, a brain injury resulting in Cerebral Palsy.

Meconium is just one of a number of somewhat subtle cues that something wrong may have taken place. The child’s color at the time of birth can say a lot about what may have occurred in the womb, especially regarding access to oxygen. Yellowing of the skin is another sign of jaundice, which can cause kernicterus and, subsequently, Cerebral Palsy. Was your child bruised at birth? Were fetal monitors turned off or disregarded at some point during the delivery of your baby with Cerebral Palsy? All of these seem like minor details, but could speak volumes about why your child will face a lifetime with CP.

Of course, it’s not up to parents to play doctor, lawyer, detective and mother/father when it comes to exploring how their child’s Cerebral Palsy occurred. Instead, that is the job of professionals conducting a free Medical Legal Review on your behalf. Made up of medical professionals, intake specialists and attorneys, the people who will help you with a Medical Legal Review examine the circumstances surrounding your pregnancy, delivery and your child’s post-birth care to determine how your child’s brain injury occurred, resulting in a Cerebral Palsy diagnosis. We offer Medical Legal Reviews as a service to parents looking to explore all options for their child; when a child’s Cerebral Palsy is determined to have preventable, he or she can be entitled to Lifetime Benefits that cover the wide assortment of costs related to improving your child’s health and future for decades to come.

For more information on Lifetime Benefits, Medical Legal Reviews, and warning signs associated with preventable Cerebral Palsy and more, call our offices at (800) 462-5772 or fill out our contact form today.

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