Talks with an Expert Birth Injury Lawyer in Los Angeles
Having a baby is supposed to be a beautiful, joyful experience yet sometimes the unthinkable happens: your baby is injured during childbirth. Birth injuries can be serious, life-altering events that occur at your child’s most vulnerable time: prior to or during childbirth.
Birth injuries most commonly occur when your doctor, midwife, nurse or other medical professional does not follow the professional standard of care or fails to recognize a potential danger to the mother or child during the child’s delivery. However, birth injuries can also occur before the birthing process, while the child is still in the womb.
Any time a medical professional deviates from professional standards, an innocent baby can be harmed. The doctors, nurses, and hospital staff can be held liable for their negligent actions. And more importantly, you, the parent, can get legal help.
Giving birth should be a memorable and joyous occasion for the proud parents. However, the act of childbirth is a complex procedure that carries risks to both the mother and newborn that are best handled by qualified medical staff. Complications during labor can result in brain injuries, spinal injuries, deformities, broken bones, cerebral palsy, Erb’s palsy or even stillbirth. Certain injuries occurring during the birthing process can lead to lifelong medical complications requiring expensive medical care and treatment.
Though injuries to newborns are sometimes caused by natural complications during labor, others are caused by medical malpractice. Unfortunately, doctors and medical staff will sometimes blame natural “complications” for birth injuries, when in fact the problem was caused by their own professional negligence.Expectant mothers are often not in a position to know the truth. In such circumstances, a qualified birth injury attorney is needed to investigate, help discover the truth and recover any damages that the parents or child may be entitled to.
Too much pressure on the infant from doctors or nurses during delivery can result in nerve or tissue damage, brain trauma, bone injuries or a host of other complications. Bones in newborn babies are soft and not fully developed, thus requiring gentle care when handling them. This applies especially to the skull area. Too much pressure during delivery procedures can cause broken bones, nerve damage, brain damage or deformities. Negligent birthing procedures can also result in a lack of oxygen to the newborn, resulting in life long conditions such as cerebral palsy or hypoxia.
Medical malpractice resulting in birth injury can also be the result of negligent care even before the labor process. For instance, negligently prescribing harmful medications during pregnancy can result in serious birth defects. Thalidomide prescriptions in the late 1950s and early 60s led to a wave of births where the children suffered from a serious birth defect known as phocomelia, which causes serious deformations of the limbs. These complications often require a lifetime of expensive medical treatment.
If you are pregnant, make sure that you are receiving care from professional medical staff. Should you decide on “natural childbirth” options, make certain that all midwife staff or assistants are duly licensed and that a backup hospital plan exists should complications arise.
Should you or your child suffer from serious or lasting injuries during birth, consult a qualified birth injury or personal injury attorney to protect your rights and help get you the compensation that you deserve.
Birth Trauma Statistics
Unfortunately, almost seven out of 1,000 infants born in the United States each year are physically injured during labor and delivery and many of these injuries are preventable. However, not all birth injuries show up immediately. Birth injuries can manifest in many ways, including physical injuries, developmental delays, and/or congenital defects. Your baby could be suffering from a birth injury that is not obvious and/or will not become apparent until days, months, or years down the road.
Types of Birth Injuries:
Some of the more common birth injuries include:
- Cerebral palsy
- Brachial Plexus Injury or Erb’s Palsy
- Hypoxic-ischemic Encephalopathy or HIE
- Brain swelling
- Facial nerve damage
- Skull fractures
Superior Birth Injury Lawyer in Los Angeles
Birth injuries can be overwhelming and life-changing, for both the innocent victims and their families. As a parent faced with long-term medical, education, and other associated costs, you might feel like you are facing an uphill battle. With the experience and assistance of the skilled doctors-turned-lawyers at The Trial Law Offices of Bradley I. Kramer you do not have to face any of this alone. Bradley I. Kramer, M.D. Esq. and his team will aggressively fight on behalf of you and your child, ensuring that you get the professional legal representation that your child deserves.
Cerebral palsy is a disease that affects a number of children born in the United States. Cerebral palsy usually shows up in the early years of your child’s life, even though it can be a result of negligence on behalf of your doctor, midwife, nurse, or other medical professional during childbirth. Symptoms of the disease often present themselves before the age of three, however these symptoms can also be indicative of other diseases.
Cerebral palsy consists of a range of disorders that affect your child’s brain and nervous system and leads to movement problems. Each case of cerebral palsy is unique and can affect your child’s life dramatically. Unfortunately, most of the children diagnosed with cerebral palsy should not be suffering from the disorder, but must learn to live with it due to another person’s negligence, most often a medical practitioner.
Symptoms of Cerebral Palsy
Cerebral palsy can be difficult to diagnose and many parents are not immediately aware that their child has the disease. One in 303 children are diagnosed with the disease each year. Symptoms of cerebral palsy include:
- Lack of head control
- Poor motor development
- Delays in walking or crawling
- Muscle abnormalities (stiff or over-relaxed muscles)
- Loss of co-ordination and balance
- Difficulty in coordination and writing/li>
- Involuntary spasms and movements
- Problems with hearing, sight, and speech<
- Problems with bladder and bower control
- Slow general development
Types of Cerebral Palsy
There are different types of cerebral palsy. The classifications for the different conditions of cerebral palsy are spastic, ataxic, athetoid/dyskinetic, and mixed. Medicine has not found a cure for the disease, which means that doctors and medical professionals are restricted to treatment and management of its effects.
- Spastic – Constituting the majority of cerebral palsy cases, spastic cerebral palsy is a lesion in the brain that causes neuromuscular mobility impairment from damaged nerves. Multiple limbs and the left, right, lower, and upper areas of the body can be affected.
- Athetoid/Dyskinetic – Caused by damage to the cerebellum or basal ganglia, which are responsible for processing the signals that enable smooth, coordinated movements and for typical body posture. Damaged muscle tone makes it difficult for the person to walk or hold themselves upright, and also makes fine motor control extremely difficult.
- Mixed – Any case of cerebral palsy where the person suffers from muscle impairment of more than one classification.
Experienced Cerebral Palsy Lawyer
A cerebral palsy diagnosis can lead to years of medical expenses and life challenges for your child. Medical professionals should be held accountable for mistakes that cause a child to develop cerebral palsy. To learn more about your legal rights and options if your child is living with cerebral palsy, contact the skilled doctors-turned-lawyers at BIKLAW today. Not only do they understand the laws and how to aggressively fight for your child’s legal rights, but as licensed doctors, they are familiar with the disease and physical, emotional, and mental challenges it can bring your child.
Q & A With Bradley I. Kramer
Below are some of the most common questions that are received about birth injury cases of medical malpractice. Of course each case is unique and you should contact the office on 310 289 2600 for a proper assessment of your situation
Do I need an attorney for a birth injury case?
Birth injury cases are some of the most troubling cases that I have ever come across. Principally, you have individuals who are harmed during the birth process or right around the birth process who are going to suffer lifelong injuries. Those cases can be worth millions of dollars in compensation and a lot of that compensation goes towards future medical bills, future healthcare that’s going to be needed for those individuals, future nursing home care.
When an individual suspects that their baby has something wrong with him/her, the first thing to do is to get me on the phone and tell me about the injury and to get the medical records that relates to that individual’s child. Once I have those medicals records, I can instantaneously assess them and get them out to an obstetrician expert who can testify or who can enlighten me as to specifically what went wrong, and whether there was a fault on behalf of the hospital, on the nurses, the doctors, or someone else involved in that baby’s care.
What are some common scenarios that result in a claim?
There are a variety of birth injury claims. One is cerebral palsy, another is shoulder dystocia, brachial plexus injury which are problems with the bony skeleton of an individual baby that comes out due to poor technique used in the delivery process. There can also be damages to the mother when certain processes aren’t put in place correctly.
The most troubling injury that I see with regard to birth injuries is what’s called hypoxic encephalopathy which is where the brain doesn’t get enough oxygen during the birthing process. When you deprive a baby from oxygen it’s much like when you deprive an adult of oxygen. That can lead to really catastrophic injuries. I handle birth injury cases on a regular basis.
What is the legal process involved?
The legal process for a birth injury claim is to get the medical records for the birth incident and to get them to an attorney. Once I have those records, I can evaluate them, get an obstetrician on board to evaluate them with me, and if there is some sort of injury that shouldn’t have occurred, we can file a lawsuit to get compensation.
What resources can you offer to make a strong case for a birth trauma claim?
The resources I can put together for a birth injury case is that I am a licensed physician and surgeon in California. I have been involved in medicine since 1996 when I started medical school. I keep my medical license current every year. So, when I evaluate a medical malpractice case, I am not only doing so from the perspective of a lawyer, but also from the perspective of a licensed doctor.