Pittsburgh Birth Injury Attorney
Was Your Child the Victim of Labor and Delivery Malpractice?
Both mother and child need strong and attentive care throughout the labor and delivery process, relying on doctors, nurses, OB/GYNs, and other healthcare professionals to have the training and experience to take the right action at the right time. Unfortunately, mistakes do happen, and a health provider’s negligent action or inaction can have serious consequences. This is where a Pittsburgh birth injury lawyer can help you.
At Dallas W. Hartman, P.C., we represent medical malpractice cases resulting in birth injury for mothers and children throughout the State of Pennsylvania. We provide experienced team of attorneys who have the experience and commitment to be effective for your case and aggressively pursue the compensation your family will need now and in the future.
What Are The Most Common Causes of Birth Injury?
While some birth injuries can be related to congenital conditions or problems with the mother health during pregnancy, many of them are the result of medical malpractice. Common forms of medical negligence that lead to birth injuries include:
- Failure to order a timely C-section
- Failure to properly monitor the baby’s and mother’s vital signs during labor and deliver
- Improper use of forceps or vacuum extractors
- Failure to diagnose maternal medical conditions
- Lack of oxygen to the baby’s brain during delivery
- Breech delivery
- Failure to recognize signs of fetal distress or umbilical cord issues
- Improper administration of medications
- Failure to adequately plan for high-risk deliveries
- Uterine rupture
These mistakes can lead to serious and even life-threatening consequences.
Consequences of Birth Injuries
Birth injuries can have lasting and life-altering consequences, including:
- Development disabilities – Babies may miss developmental milestones due to birth injuries. They may be delayed in when they sit, walk, talk, or crawl. They may lack coordination and continue to struggle with mobility issues later in life.
- Blindness – Some birth defects cause blindness in children that is never cured.
- Failure to thrive – In some situations, birth injuries can lead to a failure to thrive, which indicates they are much smaller than healthy babies of the same age. Some conditions are severe and result in problems with the baby growing.
- Paralysis – Some mobility issues are so severe that the baby is paralyzed in one or more regions of their body. These injuries can prevent them from working and having normal lives.
- Respiratory problems – Birth injuries may result in underdeveloped lungs and respiratory conditions.
Depending on the nature and severity of the birth injury, the baby and their family may face many medical and financial struggles. The child may need special therapies, surgeries, medications, personal care attendants, and other medical assistance. These special needs can be expensive to provide. A birth injury claim may be able to provide the financial resources your child needs.
Types of Cases a Pittsburgh Birth Injury Lawyer Can Help With
Even a very serious birth injury may not be immediately apparent, and once you begin to suspect that there may have been malpractice in the delivery room that resulted in a disability or injury it can be hard to get a straight answer from hospitals and doctors. Parents can feel completely left in the dark as they struggle to deal with the consequences of someone else’s mistake.
This is when you should seriously consider working with an experienced and trusted legal professional. Our Pittsburgh medical malpractice lawyers have extensive trial experience and a reputation for proven results in medical malpractice cases, and we can take on complex cases involving:
- Vaginal birth after cesarean (VBAC)
- Vacuum and forceps extraction
- Cerebral palsy
- Erb’s palsy
- Shoulder dystocia
- OBGYN mistakes
Whether your doctor failed to perform a C-Section in a timely fashion, improperly used forceps or failed to recognize fetal distress during the labor process, we can help you get answers to difficult questions and then pursue compensation as appropriate. The longer you wait to take action, the more difficult your case may become. Do not wait to protect your rights and secure compensation.
Medical Mistakes Resulting in Birth Injury
Some people assume that if a child was injured during birth that it is automatically a medical malpractice case. However, this is not the truth. When a birth injury is caused by a medical mistake, it is considered medical malpractice. Healthcare providers including nurses, general practice doctors, obstetricians, gynecologists, and medical technicians are expected to provide care consistent with the applicable standard of care, which is the same level of care another medical provider with the same experience and background would provide under similar circumstances. If your healthcare provider deviated from that standard of care and your child was injured as a result, this establishes the basis of a medical malpractice claim.
However, proving these legal elements can be very challenging. This is why it is essential to work with an experienced Pittsburgh birth injury attorney who knows how to build your claim. You will also need a medical expert who can explain what the applicable standard of care was, how your healthcare deviated from that standard, and how that deviation caused your child’s injury. Ultimately, a medical expert can help connect the dots between a healthcare provider’s negligent act or omission and your child’s injury.
What is the Difference Between Birth Injuries and Birth Defects?
A birth injury is a preventable physical injury or condition that a baby suffers during delivery. Typically, birth injuries have a physical cause and are the result of a doctor’s mistake or medical negligence during the birth process.
On the other hand, a birth defect is a physical or medical condition that develops while the baby is growing in the mother’s womb. Birth defects typically have genetic or environmental causes.
Birth Injury Statute of Limitations in Pennsylvania
In Pennsylvania, there is a strict time limit within which medical malpractice and personal injury lawsuits must be filed. Under Pennsylvania law, the statute of limitations on a birth injury is two years from the date the injury was discovered or should have reasonably been discovered. In some cases, it can take time for birth injuries to become apparent, so the discovery rule would extend the statute of limitations.
If your child later decides to file a medical malpractice lawsuit on his or her own behalf, he or she has until age 20 to file a lawsuit.
How Much Compensation Can I Recover for My Birth Injury Case in Pittsburgh?
While every case is unique, you and your family may be entitled to various forms of compensation for a Pittsburgh birth injury. The parents usually recover these damages on behalf of the child, or they may be recovered directly if the mother was the one who suffered the injury.
You can expect to recover the medical expenses that you incurred to treat the injury. You and your baby may also be entitled to recover damages for pain and suffering and diminished quality of life. If the mother suffered a birth injury during delivery, she may also be entitled to recover lost wages for missing work during her recovery.
Talk to a Pittsburgh Birth Injury Attorney Today
If you suspect your child has been harmed in a birth injury as a result of medical malpractice or negligence, call our Pittsburgh personal injury lawyers at 1-800-777-4081 or contact us online. It costs you nothing to meet with a Pittsburgh birth injury attorney at our convenient Pittsburgh office, or other Pennsylvania locations in New Castle, Hermitage, Butler and Erie.