A cesarean birth (also called a C-section) happens when a doctor must make an incision into the uterus to remove a baby. C-sections are typically performed when a vaginal delivery would put the baby or mother at risk. If the doctor opts for a C-section when a vaginal birth would have been possible, or if a physician chooses a vaginal birth though a C-section would be safer, it may indicate medical malpractice.
When Is a C-Section Necessary?
Most C-sections are performed when a vaginal birth leads to complications. Previous C-sections, or other uterine surgeries, for example, could result in complications such as a uterine scar rupture. Additionally, C-sections could be necessary when you have an infection such as HIV or genital herpes, which reduces the chance of passing it on to the child. Chronic health conditions that require treatment, such as diabetes or high blood pressure, also increase your health risks with vaginal births. Finally, placenta problems can cause dangerous bleeding during vaginal births. If the doctor detects abnormalities in the placenta, he or she may decide to make the uterine incision.
Several birth injuries are possible if your doctor should have performed a C-section but didn’t. If an infant is left too long in the birth canal, the child could get Asperger’s syndrome, ADHD, or autism. The extended compression of the brain could cause an adverse reaction that could manifest as one of those conditions. It could also result in hematoma, spina bifida, brain injury due to oxygen deprivation, and umbilical cord prolapse. More common birth injuries could occur as a consequence of the size of the baby or the mother’s pelvis or simply the position of the baby on its way through the canal. Brachial plexus, Erb’s palsy, Klumpke’s palsy, and shoulder dystocia are all injuries an infant could sustain if a limb or head is caught in the wrong position during delivery.
When Is It Medical Malpractice?
Throughout the pregnancy, doctors should be observing the health of the mother and the child. This allows them to make the recommendation of having a C-section if they believe a vaginal birth will be unsafe. Things can seem normal until the process of the birth itself, which can have unexpected consequences. In Pennsylvania, medical malpractice happens when a doctor or health care professional commits medical negligence and violates the standard of care. Standard of care is the generally accepted medical practices used by a group of practitioners in the same geographic area for patients experiencing the same illness or condition. Additionally, the negligence must have contributed directly to the injury. If you can prove the doctor failed to account for the potential health risks of a vaginal birth, you can sue for negligence.
If your baby was injured because of a medical professional, seek legal counsel. An excellent Pennsylvania personal injury attorney can help you collect evidence and from your case. Don’t let someone else’s negligence ruin your child’s future. Contact us at (888) 498-3023 or fill out our online form to schedule a consultation. We are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.