Brachial Plexus Injury Attorneys
Trusted Chicago Birth Injury Lawyers with 30+ Years of Experience
With today’s technology and medical advancements, giving birth to babies has become significantly less dangerous and relatively easier. It is a doctor’s responsibility to keep up to date with all the current delivery procedures and techniques in order to ensure a high level of care. Unfortunately, there are still many errors that happen in the delivery room. One of the more prominent birth injuries that occur is due to damage to the brachial plexus.
Brachial plexus are the nerve fibers that move from the spine through the neck into the arms. If these nerves are stretched too much or handled forcefully, the nerves in the baby’s arm, neck, or spine can be damaged. Brachial plexus injuries range from minor to severe. Newborns often sustain injuries when a doctor is careless with the way they assist a birth. If your child has experienced injury to their brachial plexus nerves, you may have grounds for legal compensation.
Common Brachial Plexus Injury Causes
There are certain signs doctors should look for to prevent brachial plexus injuries. Is a baby relatively large? Does the mother have gestational diabetes? These can warn doctors of potential complications during the birth, which could lead to brachial plexus injuries. There are also other causes of this specific injury.
Using Excessive Force
Sometimes, situations arise that require the doctors to use force to pull out the child. An example of this is when shoulder dystocia happens, where the child’s shoulder is stuck by the mother’s pelvic bone. A doctor may pull too excessively, causing the brachial plexus to tear or rupture.
Improperly Using Birthing Tools
Doctors may be required to use tools such as forceps or a vacuum-extraction during the delivery process. However, because the child is so delicate, if the doctor uses these tools incorrectly, the baby can sustain irreparable damage, particularly to the brachial plexus. With the tools as sharp and aggressive as they are, a child can experience scratches, tears, and other lacerations to their nerve fibers.
Contractions and Delivery Lasting for Too Long
If there is a complication during the labor, a mother’s contraction may put extra pressure on the baby’s shoulders and head. This is especially true if the baby is stuck in the birth canal. A doctor must work swiftly so that minimal harm occurs.
Common Brachial Plexus Injuries
Brachial plexus injuries range from minors damage to severe damage. Because each case is unique, there are different types of injuries that happen. Here are a few common ones.
Neurapraxia refers to minor strains or tears in the brachial plexus nerves. The severity of this injury is relatively minor, with damages usually being cleared on their own. It affects the lining covering the nerves, but the actual nerve is unharmed. Although painful, it can be remedied.
Erb’s Palsy is a form of brachial plexus damage, where the nerves are injured and fail to perform correctly. It happens when the Erb’s point endures a lesion or some form of harm. The severity of damage ranges. Common injuries include paralysis, sensory or motor loss, numbness in the arm, or unusually held arm.
Klumpke’s palsy occurs when the lower brachial plexus nerves are damaged. Babies can experience numbness, constriction of pupils, or a claw-like formation of the hands and fingers.
Renowned Birth Injury Litigators
At Power, Rogers & Smith, L.L.P., we understand the desire for a healthy and happy baby. No parent wants to see their child suffer or endure any form of pain. That is why if your doctor was negligent or careless in the delivery room and your child formed brachial plexus nerve damage, you may have grounds to take the matter to court. Call our experienced Chicago birth injury attorneys today to learn your legal rights and take the first steps to recovering what you are owed.