Delivering a child in breech can have increased risks of birth injuries and complications as opposed to a “normal” birth where the head comes out first. These risks can often be avoided by waiting for the baby to change position or, if the baby does not move, using a C-section instead of natural delivery. In many cases, the additional risks of a breech birth are avoidable, but if your doctor continued with a breech delivery and your baby was injured, you may be entitled to sue the doctor for the unnecessary risks.
Talk to our Dallas, TX breech birth malpractice attorneys today to learn more about whether your doctor was negligent in delivering your baby in a breech position. The Queenan Law Firm’s birth injury lawyers offer free legal consultations to help you learn more about your potential case and to discuss what your claim might be worth. For your free consultation, call us today at (817) 476-1797.
Injuries and Complications from Breech Deliveries
When a baby is in “breech” position, it means the baby is upside down. Babies are typically delivered head-first. When this happens, the baby’s skull is able to compress and allow for easier movement through the birth canal, and since the shoulders come out before the arms and the hips come out before the legs, the limbs are in a better position to allow for a smooth delivery. When the baby comes out backwards, the delivery can take longer and more complications can ensue.
If the baby is delivered feet-first, they could become stuck in the birth canal. This can mean taking a significantly longer time to deliver the baby. During that time, the baby’s skull could remain deformed, and excessive pressure on the head could cause brain injuries and skull deformations.
The pressure on the baby could also compress the umbilical cord. Since the baby still relies upon the umbilical cord for oxygen, compression of the cord could cut off that supply and cause the baby to begin to suffocate. The lack of oxygen can cause many complications, the most concerning of which is brain damage.
If a baby is in distress and the delivery is taking longer than expected, the doctor may turn to forceps to help the delivery along. Forceps are large metal tongs used to help guide and pull the baby out of the birth canal, but using hard metal tools on a newborn has risks. These tools could cause injury if used improperly, as extra pressure could cause broken bones, nerve injuries, bruising, and other injuries. If the doctor elects to use forceps when they are not necessary or the doctor misuses the forceps, the doctor could be responsible for injuries the forceps cause.
In many cases, it is better to deliver a baby in breech presentation via C-section than natural delivery. While many breech deliveries can go off without a problem, the increased risk of injury is often unacceptable, and that risk can be avoided by using a C-section. While C-sections carry their own risks, it is often preferable to use a C-section when the baby is in breech, and a doctor might be negligent for failing to do so.
Suing Your Doctor for Injuries from a Breech Childbirth
If your doctor’s care was lacking and their decisions put your child at risk by delivering the baby in breech, you may be entitled to sue the doctor for the baby’s injuries. Not every case of breech delivery involves injuries and complications, so you are not automatically entitled to sue in every case where the baby is delivered in breech. Additionally, the decision to deliver a baby in breech is not, by itself, automatically negligent; there must be injuries or complications for there to be a lawsuit. However, if standards in the medical community would have recommended avoiding a breech delivery, you may be entitled to sue your doctor for the effects of injuries and health issues the baby suffers.
A lawsuit against a doctor for negligent medical care is typically based on the argument that the doctor’s care fell below applicable standards in the medical community. The “standard of care” is set not by law or information contained in medical textbooks, but rather by looking at what a reasonable physician of similar training and skill would do in the same situation. Your attorney will typically use a medical expert – a doctor of similar training and experience to the defendant – to provide the jury with information on what your doctor should have done differently. This expert is an essential part of building your case and proving to the jury that your doctor’s care was indeed sub-standard.
Damages for Breech Birth Injuries in Texas
In addition to proving that the doctor committed negligence, you must also prove the damages your child suffered before the court can order compensation for those injuries. This typically means proving the cost of additional medical care to deal with the complications and injuries. In addition, your child might face future medical care costs for physical therapy, occupational therapy, and other procedures as well as future lost wages if they suffered permanent disabilities. Compensation can also be claimed for these future costs. Lastly, you can also claim financial compensation for the value of your child’s pain and suffering from the injuries.
Call Our Dallas Breech Delivery Injury Attorneys for a Free Consultation
If your baby was delivered in breech and suffered serious health consequences or injuries because of the backwards delivery, contact an attorney today. The Queenan Law Firm’s Dallas, TX breech birth malpractice lawyers may be able to help with your case and work to get you and your family the compensation you need after your child’s breech birth injuries. For a free legal consultation and more information about your potential claim, call our lawyers today at (817) 476-1797.