What is a birth injury?
Birth injury is defined as damage to a newborn’s body function or structure that occurs due to an adverse event during labor. In the vast majority of births, the baby experiences no significant injury during labor; however, harm can and does occur in a small number of cases. In many cases, these injuries have lifelong effects for the child.
Unfortunately, a significant proportion of birth injuries occur because of wrongdoing or negligence on the part of the doctor.
The most common birth injuries include:
- Brachial plexus injury (Erb’s palsy) – A nerve injury that can impair use of the arm, often caused by shoulder dystocia
- Birth asphyxia – Lack of oxygen to the baby’s brain and body, which may have long-lasting effects on cognition
- Cerebral palsy – A condition that typically manifests as impaired muscle coordination, often caused by brain damage during birth
- Cephalohematoma – A hemorrhage on the baby’s head
- Persistent pulmonary hypertension of the newborn (PPHN) – A condition in which the baby’s circulation does not make necessary changes after birth, leading to high pulmonary blood pressure and other abnormalities
- Death – The most severe and tragic outcome, the loss of a newborn’s life does occur in a small number of birth injury cases
More Birth Injury FAQs
- Can I file a birth injury lawsuit for cerebral palsy?
- Can I file a birth injury lawsuit for Erb’s Palsy?
- How do I know if I have a birth injury case?
- How long do I have to file a birth injury lawsuit?
- What is a birth injury?