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Parents contend hospital negligent in causing son’s birth injury

When most Ohio residents think about the act of having a baby, images of a woman baring down in a hospital room typically come to mind. Increasingly, however, Cesarian births are becoming more routine. While C-sections may be more common nowadays, the procedure is still considered a major surgery and there are known and potential complications associated with a C-section that may adversely impact the health and wellbeing of both mother and child.

For these reasons, some women are adamantly opposed to having a C-section, even in cases where the procedure is typically recommended. A couple recently filed a medical malpractice lawsuit against the hospital where their son was delivered.

The couple is seeking to recover damages in the amount of $25.6 million dollars related to the birth injury of their son. According to the lawsuit, the couple was informed that their unborn son was positioned feet first in the womb, a position that is commonly referred to as breech.

Due to the risk of serious complications, doctors traditionally advise women whose babies are breech to deliver via C-section. In this case, however, the woman wanted to deliver the baby vaginally and sought the advice of obstetricians at a medical hospital that claimed to specialize in vaginal breech deliveries.

The couple met with obstetricians at the hospital and were reassured that a C-section could be performed should the mother or baby experience complications during a vaginal delivery. However, doctors failed to do so when such complications presented. As a result, the infant was deprived of oxygen after his erratic heart rate caused him to lose consciousness.

In the lawsuit, the couple contends doctors failed to take action to prevent their son's birth injury. The boy suffered irreversible brain damages and has been diagnosed with cerebral palsy. His parents are asking for more than $25 million dollars to account for those physical and emotional injuries suffered as well as the ongoing medical care their son will require.

Source: The Oregonian, "OHSU faces $25.6 million malpractice lawsuit over vaginal delivery of breech baby," Helen Jung, Sep. 24, 2013

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