Giving birth to a child is often one of the most pivotal and powerful experiences in any parents’ life. As such, great care is taken in hospitals and other medical facilities to ensure that the delivery process goes smoothly. Still, nearly half a percent (or five in a thousand) of children delivered in the US suffer from birth injuries. In the case of doctor, nurse, or institutional negligence, damage awards can compensate both parents and children for medical expenses, lost income, emotional distress and more.
On first glance, it can often be difficult to determine whether a birth complication is the result of medical intervention, or an unavoidable birth defect, genetic or otherwise. Birth defects can also be caused be chemical agents called “teratogens,” which range from alcohol and tobacco to pre-natal medications such as Delalutin and Bendectin.
Nevertheless, families can receive compensation for both birth injuries and defects if a medical professional is found liable for negligence causing these complications. Birth injuries can be caused by anything from improper delivery technique, failure to employ necessary caesarian section surgery, which can lead to a dangerous lack of oxygen to the baby during delivery.
Even among the rare births that result in complications for the mother and/or child, birth injuries and defects are often unavoidable. In such cases, the doctor or hospital’s only recourse it to mitigate these complications. To determine the extent of liability for birth injuries, a medical professional must be shown to have failed to conduct themselves according to a generally accepted standard of medical care. This requires testimony from a medical expert in the field of obstetrics.
In the case of birth defects that were caused by defective pre-natal care, a pharmaceutical company can also be found liable for these complications. For instance, both Delalutin and Bendectin were regularly prescribed to pregnant women for the treatment of miscarriages and nausea respectively before they were discovered to be the cause birth defects in many patients.
Birth injury and defect claims can be difficult to prove both on the level of negligence and causation. You will need expert medical testimony and legal ingenuity to bring your case to justice.