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What Kinds of Injuries can My Child Suffer During Birth?

Posted on in Medical Malpractice

What Kinds of Injuries can My Child Suffer During Birth?

Birth injuries due to physician negligence can have long-lasting, even permanent, effects on a child's quality of life. When a child is injured before, during, or shortly after birth because of a medical professional's negligence, his or her parents may pursue compensation for their related damages through a medical malpractice claim.

Below are a few common birth injuries associated with physician negligence. These are not the only injuries a child can suffer at birth. Others include Bell's Palsy, subconjunctive hemorrhaging, and caput succedaneum.

Broken Bones and Soft Tissue Injuries

A newborn can suffer broken bones and soft tissue injuries anywhere in his or her body due to rough handling by the medical professionals attending the birth or because of conditions like shoulder dystocia, which occurs when one of a baby's shoulders is trapped behind the mother's pubic bone during birth.

In some cases, babies are born with bruises from rough handling and impact with birth equipment. This equipment can also cut a baby's skin, leaving scars.

Brachial Plexus Injuries

The brachial plexus is a set of five nerve groups that extend from the spinal cord to the tips of the fingers. This network runs the length of the upper spinal cord. When a newborn is handled roughly or birth equipment like forceps are used incorrectly, the brachial plexus can be permanently damaged. This results in a condition like Erb's Palsy or Klumpke's Palsy. Erb's Palsy is the complete paralysis of the arm. Klumpke's Palsy is the paralysis of the forearm and hand. Both conditions can vary in severity.

Cerebral Palsy

Cerebral palsy can occur when medical staff members use equipment like forceps or a vacuum extractor inappropriately, injuring a newborn's brain. It can also result from an infection or a lack of oxygen to the newborn's brain, both of which can result from insufficient monitoring on a medical professional's part.

Babies born prematurely and those with low birth weights have an increased risk of developing cerebral palsy.


Cephalohematoma is an injury that results in bleeding between the skull and the protective membrane directly beneath the infant's skin, the periosteum. This injury can result from the improper use of a vaccuum extractor or forceps. When a child suffers this condition, blood collects in a pocket between the skull and the periosteum. It increases his or her risk of suffering from jaundice, anemia, and infection.

Work with an Experienced Palatine Medical Malpractice Lawyer

When your son or daughter suffers a birth injury, you could have the right to recover monetary compensation for the financial damages you suffer as a result of the injury. To learn more about birth injury claims and your rights as the parent of a child who suffered a birth injury, contact our team of medical malpractice lawyers at Newland & Newland, LLP today to set up your initial legal consultation in our office. We serve clients in the Arlington Heights, Palatine, Rolling Meadows, Libertyville, Mundelein, Buffalo Grove, Schaumburg, Elk Grove, and Itasca areas.

(image courtesy of Carlo Navarro)

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