Florida Mother Gets $38.75 Million For Failure To Timely Perform C-Section
Earlier this year, a Florida jury awarded a mother $38.75 million against a obstetrician and hospital after the physician failed to timely perform a c-section on the mother. As a result of the delay, the mother's baby suffered a birth injury resulting in cerebral palsy. Like other types of birth injuries, cerebral palsy is avoidable. Generally speaking, cerebral palsy occurs when a baby does not receive enough oxygen to the brain and begins showing signs of distress that is seen in the fetal heart monitoring strips. In these circumstances, when an unborn baby is showing signs of fetal distress, the standard of care often dictates that an emergency c-section be performed. If not, irreversible injury to the baby, such as cerebral palsy or other types of brain damage can occur.
Cerebral palsy is a complex medical condition that ranges in severity from mild to severe. Typically, those afflicted with cerebral palsy have an inability to control their motor function; i.e., they lack adequate muscle control and coordination. Common symptoms that can lead to a diagnosis of cerebral palsy include: involuntary movements of limbs; muscle spasticity (tightness), inability to walk properly (gait); seizures, breathing problems or difficulty swallowing; bladder and bowel continence issues; learning disabilities, and the impairment of one or more senses (sight, hearing, etc.). More severe cases may also result in a child having difficulty speaking.
In many instances, cerebral palsy is preventable. Perhaps the greatest risk factor associated with cerebral palsy is a lack of oxygen flowing to the child (asphyxia) during the birthing process. This can occur if the umbilical cord becomes wrapped around the infant's neck, or if the infant's head becomes stuck during the delivery. In essence, when an infant is deprived of oxygen for a prolonged period of time, brain cells die, causing injury.
While not all birth injuries are caused by medical negligence, many can be avoided.
At STSW, our lawyers routinely are asked to represent parents of infant children who have suffered profound brain injuries during the labor & delivery process. In most instances, these infants are found to have suffered global cognitive delays along with the inability to complete most activities of daily living. To properly care for these infants in their early years and as they grow older, millions of dollars are required. Accordingly, it is important that parents of brain-injured children seek the representation of competent attorneys who are familiar with how to properly pursue these legal cases and secure the necessary experts to testify in court as to the baby's past and future needs. In order to successfully pursue these cases, our lawyers will need to retain experts in the fields of obstetrics, maternal fetal medicine, neonatology, pulmonology, cardiology, life care planning, vocational rehabilitation, physical medicine and rehabilitation, nursing, economics and neurodevelopmental delays. Our attorneys routinely handle these types of cases in the Baltimore / Maryland and Washington D.C. areas and are available for a free consultation at (410) 385-2225. Because these injuries have a profound impact not only on the lives of the children but also the parents and extended family, including a substantial financial impact, it is important to retain the services of experienced lawyers who can fight for the compensation necessary to care for your child for a lifetime. Call our legal team if you believe your obstetrician negligently delayed delivery of your child in the Baltimore and/or Washington D.C. area that resulted in he/she suffering a permanent birth injury.