The birth of a new baby into your family can be one of the happiest moments you will ever experience. Seeing your new child for the first time, holding him or her in your arms and having that tiny hand squeeze your finger are memories you will never lose. The lawyers of McIntyre Law collectively have over a dozen children and we recognize that they are truly blessings from God. It is our wish that you all will have healthy, wonderful babies. Unfortunately babies are not always born healthy and you may need the assistance of an Oklahoma birth injury lawyer.
What is a birth injury?
Almost seven out of every 1,000 babies in the United States are born with some type of a birth injury. The reasons for these complications vary greatly. They can occur because of a mother’s illness or pre-existing health condition, because of complications during the delivery and sadly even because of medical negligence on the part of doctors, nurses or hospitals.
At McIntyre Law, we are dedicated parents and our Oklahoma birth injury attorneys take special consideration when handling birth negligence cases. These cases are sensitive and special care must be given to the children and families who have suffered as a result of a preventable birth injury.
What causes birth injury?
There can be many different causes of a birth injury. Sometimes a baby is very large (birth weight exceeding 4,000 grams or 8 pounds, 13 ounces) which can result in a difficult delivery. Sometimes the baby is premature (born before the 37th week) causing the baby to be much more fragile. On other occasions the mother’s pelvis may not be adequate for a vaginal delivery and any attempt to do so will harm the baby and possibly the mother. Doctors and hospital staff must recognize this situation and act accordingly. Failure to diagnose these situations can cause severe injuries.
What are some of the more common birth injuries?
The following are common birth injuries in Oklahoma:
- Caput Succedaneum
Occasionally the baby’s scalp will develop severe swelling as it travels through the birth canal. This can cause some babies to experience bruising of the area. While the swelling usually disappears in a few days, some babies experience a much longer recovery period. Babies delivered by vacuum extraction are more likely to have this condition.
- Bruising/forceps marks
It is possible you have seen a baby with severe bruising and sometimes even scalp lacerations or cuts on their heads. While this can occur when passing through the birth canal and coming into contact with the mother’s pelvic bones, other times it is caused by forceps used during delivery.
- Facial Paralysis
Forceps can also put extreme pressure on a baby’s face, causing the facial nerve to be injured. This injury is most noticeable when the baby cries and you can visualize no movement on the side of your child’s face. Other indications are if your baby cannot close his or her eye. If the nerve was only bruised, the paralysis usually improves in a few weeks. However, if the nerve was torn, surgery may be required.
- Brachial Palsy
There is a group of nerves that connects to the arms and hands of your baby. This is called the brachial plexus. If the brachial plexus is injured during delivery, brachial palsy occurs. This is also commonly referred to as shoulder dystocia. This injury occurs when there is difficulty in delivering the baby’s shoulder. If your child has shoulder dystocia, he or she will lose the ability to flex and rotate the arm. This birth injury can be temporary but unfortunately can also be permanent.
One of the most common fractures of babies’ bones during delivery is the fracture of the clavicle or collarbone. Your child’s clavicle may break when there is difficulty delivering the baby’s shoulder or during a breech delivery. A baby that has a fractured clavicle rarely moves his arm on the side of the break.
We take seriously our responsibility to review and recognize the standard of care required by physicians in birth injury matters. The Oklahoma birth injury lawyers in our office routinely handle cases in Tulsa and Oklahoma City, and throughout the state of Oklahoma. Our client representation covers the entire state of Oklahoma from Oklahoma City, Tulsa, Lawton, Edmond, Norman, Ardmore, Idabel, Shawnee, Stillwater, Midwest City and Moore, in counties including Oklahoma County, Tulsa County, Payne County, Cleveland and McCurtain County. No matter where you are in the state of Oklahoma, we have an Oklahoma birth injury attorney standing ready to help you.
If you or a loved one has been the unfortunate victim of birth injury, please contact McIntyre Law. The exceptional level of experience and personal care can make a difference in the outcome of your case.