Unfortunately, many mothers are inclined to blame themselves for their child’s birth injury. This may be especially true when a doctor or hospital attempts to deflect blame from themselves in cases where medical negligence occurred. A doctor may dissuade a mother from contacting an attorney by telling her it was her fault the baby was injured at birth.
In some cases, natural physical or genetic characteristics are to blame for a birth injury. In other cases, a doctor’s or hospital’s mistake is to blame. A parent who has doubts about what caused an injury should speak to an attorney. A lawyer can provide insight into the common causes of birth injury and a parent’s right to pursue fair compensation.
Common Causes of Birth Injury
Some of the most commonly recognized causes or contributing factors of birth injury include:
- abnormally large fetus (a large baby is at a higher risk for certain birth injuries, including Erb’s palsy);
- premature birth (a baby who has not yet completed development is at risk for a number of health problems, including poor lung and eye development and susceptibility to illness);
- prolonged or difficult labor (this can lead to a number of injuries, including insufficient oxygen and risk for nerve damage and other birth trauma);
- breeched birth (occurs when the baby is in a position other than facing head down toward the birth canal);
- lack of sufficient oxygen to the baby (can be caused by medical error, constriction of the umbilical cord or numerous other causes); and
- birth trauma (may include a physician exerting excessive force on a baby during difficult delivery or the inappropriate use of forceps or vacuum extraction).
Some factors in a birth injury are difficult to anticipate or treat. But in other cases, adequate prevention, care, monitoring and intervention can reduce or eliminate the risk. An attorney can talk to the parents to determine the nature of the injury and who is actually to blame for a child’s disability or illness.
How a Birth Injury Attorney Determines Who is at Fault
An attorney can offer parents a free initial consultation and case evaluation to determine whether there is evidence of medical negligence. Some of the ways in which an attorney can determine who is liable for a birth injury include:
- investigating the events that led up to the birth (such as prenatal care) and the events that transpired in the delivery room;
- conducting background evaluations on all involved medical personnel and facilities;
- collecting evidence (medical records, photographs, witness testimony and so on); and
- consulting medical experts to determine the likely chain of events and causes of injury.
This is just a small sampling of the kinds of research and investigation an attorney can conduct in the pursuit of a Florida birth injury claim. Instead of blaming yourself for what happened to you and your child, learn who was really at fault for your child’s injury.