The risks that pregnancy and childbirth pose to a woman are borne out by the fact that more than 600 women die each year as a result of complications from their pregnancy or delivery, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The compassionate and knowledgeable Cleveland attorneys at The Eisen Law Firm are ready to help when the joy usually associated with childbirth is replaced by the physical and emotional pain of child birth injuries caused by negligent health care providers. Mistakes made by doctors and other health care providers during a woman’s pregnancy and at the time of delivery can result in physical conditions in both the mother and the child that can have devastating, lifelong consequences. Some of the risks associated with childbirth are unavoidable, but many of the injuries suffered by women are preventable because they are caused by the negligence of the health care professionals.
Common physical injuries experienced by mothers during birth
Injury to a mother during labor or delivery is much more common than most people think. Such injuries to the mother can produce complications that may also affect the baby. If left undiagnosed or untreated, these conditions can have long-term effects on both of them.
Not all birth injuries are physical. Physical injuries are painful and can be disabling, but mental or emotional injuries can be equally as devastating and debilitating. Some examples of injuries a mother might suffer at the hands of negligent health care providers at or near the time of birth include:
- Preeclampsia: Hypertension caused by pregnancy that, if undetected and untreated, can cause severe cognitive problems in the mother (called “encephalopathy”) or even the death of the mother and the child.
- Caesarean sections gone wrong: Bleeding and infections are some of the consequences of a surgical birth. Scar tissue, also known as surgical adhesions, can build up following a C-section and can complicate future pregnancies and deliveries. Injuries to the mother’s bladder or to the child from a scalpel or other instrument can occur from poor operative technique.
- Episiotomy complications: An incision to enlarge the vaginal opening to facilitate delivery can cause excessive bleeding if sutured improperly and can lead to significant infection or even nerve injury.
- Anesthesia complications: Anesthesia and spinal epidurals used during labor and delivery to alleviate the mother’s pain can have serious side effects if blood pressure, heart rate and oxygen levels are not monitored closely by doctors and nurses.
Other injuries that happen when a mother does not receive the proper medical care can include uterine hyper-stimulation, vaginal tears, vaginal lacerations, bruising and broken bones.
Emotional and mental birth injuries suffered by mothers
The physical injuries associated with improper medical treatment and care can also be accompanied by undiagnosed and untreated psychological and emotional disorders related to the birth of a child. Depression and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) can be so disabling to a mother that she is unable to care for her newborn. The failure of health care professionals to properly diagnose and treat the mother’s emotional injuries can lead to long-term disability and, in extreme cases, suicide or other self-destructive behaviors.
Damages recoverable by mothers suffering from physical or mental injuries during childbirth
It is important for mothers suffering childbirth injuries due to mistakes and negligence committed by health care providers to know they are entitled to be compensated. Damages recoverable in a medical malpractice lawsuit include:
- Expenses related to medical treatment
- Lost wages
- Physical therapy
- Home health aides
- Psychological counseling
- Physical pain
- Emotional suffering
Cleveland medical malpractice attorneys provide compassionate legal guidance to mothers suffering from childbirth injuries
The hardworking lawyers and client-focused support staff at The Eisen Law Firm are committed to obtaining the best results for mothers who are victims of medical malpractice during pregnancy or childbirth. Contact us today for a free initial consultation and case review by calling 216-687-0900, or contact us through our website.