A birth injury lawyer in Texas is an important advocate for children and their families, holding negligent pharmaceutical companies and doctors responsible for their reckless practices. Sadly, fetal complications are fairly common in the U.S., affecting about 3 percent of children. And while many of these complications are minor and completely treatable, a significant portion of fetal complications will result in lifelong impairments and risks for the child, or even premature death. Worse yet, over-the-counter and prescription drugs are responsible for a frightening proportion of complications.
WHEN IS A BIRTH INJURY LAWYER NEEDED IN TEXAS?
The arrival of a child is supposed to be a happy time, and every parent wants their newborn to have as much potential as possible. When defects or other complications are present, however, they can knock a family off balance and leave them without a clear idea of what to do next. In most cases, fetal complications and incidents during delivery are due to genetic and uncontrollable risk factors. However, doctor and drug manufacturer negligence may play a part in more than 10 percent of all cases, so families must be on their guard as soon as something appears to be wrong with the development of their child.
A birth injury lawyer representing Texas cases knows what complications are typically caused by reckless medical practices. For example, the drug Zofran, also known by its trade name ondansetron, can cause serious heart defects if expectant mothers take the drug during the first trimester of pregnancy. Specifically, researchers studying nearly 1 million Danish women found twice the risk of cardiac malformations in children exposed to Zofran during the early stages of development. Heart defects, like septal defects, often represent major risks to the child’s future development and health, especially if the defects are not discovered.
What’s particularly troubling about Zofran is that it wasn’t meant to be used in pregnant women in the first place. Ondansetron was approved for use by the FDA in 1991, but only in patients receiving chemotherapy or recovering from surgery. Its use in pregnant women was considered off-label and not approved, which means the safety research behind it was inconclusive or absent. Zofran’s manufacturer, GlaxoSmithKline, paid a lot of money and exerted a lot of pressure on doctors to get them to use the drug in pregnant women, and due to the company’s dangerous negligence, thousands of children have been harmed. That’s why the pharmaceutical giant has already paid out more than $3 billion in damages, and likely faces more in the future.
Sometimes, though, a complication is caused by poor care during the child’s delivery. The delivering doctor may cause harm if they handle the child roughly during delivery, or do not respond properly to any delivery challenges. Cerebral palsy, limb paralysis, and trauma are just a few complications that may result from a botched delivery.
It is important for a family to know what their legal rights are when their child has been born with serious complications. It may be difficult to deal with directly, but an attorney can help a family get justice for their child.