A birth injury can be the most devastating thing to happen to a new family. These injuries often occur because of the negligence of an attending physician or nurse. Although medical care for a pregnant woman is very complicated and stressful, this does not excuse malpractice on the part of a doctor or healthcare professional who is held to a high professional standard.

There are many instances where a doctor could be found to be negligent:

  1. Neglecting to diagnose a defect or ailment of the mother or baby.
  2. Neglecting to notify of a defect or ailment.
  3. Using medical equipment incorrectly.
  4. Neglecting to actively monitor the status of the mother or baby.

Sometimes, injuries during delivery can be minor afflictions that the baby will recover from. But occasionally, a baby’s injuries can be life-threatening or permanently damaging. These are some possible situations that might involve negligence on the part of a doctor or healthcare provider:

  • Cerebral Palsy – caused by a lack of oxygen to the baby. Doctors can be negligent if they do not properly monitor the oxygen levels of the baby.
  • Brain Damage – any injuries to the head caused by medical tools or otherwise can be considered negligent.
  • Premature Babies – any child that is premature requires specialized care; failure to do so can be considered negligent.
  • C-sections – Cesarean sections pose great risks for both the mother and the baby, potentially causing profuse bleeding and long-term conditions that may be fatal or life-threatening.

However, it is important to distinguish between a “birth injury” and a “birth defect.” A birth injury happens during delivery and commonly occurs because of doctors and healthcare providers not following proper protocol. A birth defect is usually traced back to a genetic abnormality or the maternal environment, i.e. conditions that a baby gets from its mother during the gestation period. There have also been rare cases where a doctor had prescribed certain medication that affected the baby negatively. Negligence on the part of a doctor often involves a “birth injury” scenario, but doctors should look out for birth defects during the pregnancy as well.

There have been cases where a doctor failed to notify parents of a confirmed chronic illness, defect or condition, known as a “wrongful birth.” Parents who would have terminated their pregnancy if they had known about their child’s condition earlier would be eligible to file these types of suits. A “wrongful pregnancy” is another instance of doctor negligence, where a woman who had undergone sterilization became pregnant due to a botched surgery.

If it is believed that a birth injury could have been prevented, then a doctor could be held liable
. An attorney may be able to help a victim get adequate compensation for any hardship that was endured due to the mistakes or carelessness of a medical professional.