What Types of Birth Injuries Can Forceps Cause?

Most people do not usually consider the possibility of medical mistakes that can lead to a birth injury until the moment one occurs. However, medical mistakes are projected to be one of the leading causes of death in the US. Unfortunately, birth errors are a relatively common type of medical mistake. From recent data provided by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), there were an estimated 22,335 infant deaths. Many of these infant deaths were the result of mistakes made during the birthing process, including those made by the use of forceps. If your child has been the victim of a birth injury, an Orange County personal injury lawyer can help.

How can the use of forceps lead to possible injury?

Medical forceps in a birthing procedure are two blades, similar to salad tongs, that are used on the infant’s head in order to pull the infant from the birth canal. However, when forceps are incorrectly used, it can be incredibly risky or dangerous and lead to several injuries for the infant. Due to this, forceps should be used only when necessary and by a professional healthcare provider. The infant’s condition must be continuously monitored while the forceps are in use.

There are also numerous specified situations in which a forceps delivery is utilized. In those situations, the mother must be experiencing the following conditions:

  • A prolonged second stage of labor
  • Maternal exhaustion or illness
  • Possible hemorrhages
  • A weakened ability to push from the drugs provided for the procedure

In addition to those requirements, the infant in question should be experiencing the following before forceps are considered:

  • Elevated heart rate at a concerning speed
  • Breech delivery (non-head first delivery)

However, there are also certain situations in which the use of forceps is prohibited during the birthing procedure, which include:

  • When the infant has less 34 weeks of development, which can lead to a higher chance of hemorrhages
  • The infant is unable to pass through the mother’s pelvis due to the infant’s head being too large
  • The fetus has a high-risk disease or disorder

Forceps can cause serious birth injuries

Data from the CDC indicates that there is a high risk of errors with forceps leading to death or some type of injury for the infant. It is also not unusual for the infant in this situation to sustain injuries, including the following:

  • Deformation
  • Head lacerations or bruising
  • Trauma to the head, face, or eyes
  • Damage to the brain or nerves
  • Fractures to the skull
  • Broken bones
  • Possible bleeding within the brain
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Possible seizures
  • Erb’s palsy
  • Cerebral palsy

Let us assist your case and secure compensation on your behalf

Seek legal assistance today if your child has sustained a birth injury caused by the use of forceps. At Aitken * Aitken * Cohn, our qualified and experienced team is prepared to thoroughly investigate every aspect of your case to find out what happened and work on your behalf in order to secure the maximum compensation you are entitled to, which can include:

  • Coverage of medical expenses related to the incident
  • Loss of enjoyment of life damages
  • Pain and suffering damages
  • Possible punitive damages against those responsible

When you need an Orange County birth injury lawyer, you can contact us for a free consultation of your case by clicking here or by calling us at 866-434-1424.