Causes of Birth Injuries

® Quick Summary

When parents are anticipating the birth of a healthy baby, but their baby is delivered unhealthy or injured they are often left wondering “How did this happen?” In many cases, the cause is medical negligence or malpractice, stemming from improper care provided by a doctor or other health care professional, before, during and immediately after delivery.

Factors that may contribute to a birth injury:

  • Lack of sufficient oxygen to the baby’s brain during labor and delivery
  • Failure to use proper delivery techniques while attempting to assist a delivery.
  • Higher birthweight babies that may be too large for a vaginal birth.  During delivery, their shoulder’s could become stuck, leading to a birth injury.
  • Large fetal head that could delay or prolong delivery
  • Baby presents in a position other than headfirst during delivery
  • Improper use of Pitocin, a drug which is used to induce or facilitate labor
  • Improper use of delivery instruments such as forceps and vacuum to assist in the vaginal delivery of an infant. Injuries can include facial nerve damage with resulting facial paralysis, bleeding into the brain, or skull fracture
  • Failure to accurately interpret fetal ultrasounds
  • Failure to promptly recognize signs of fetal distress seen on the fetal heart monitor and provide the appropriate treatment
  • Failure to expedite delivery of the baby, or to perform a cesarean section (c-section), when the condition of the baby and/or mother requires it
  • Failure to properly resuscitate or care for the newborn after delivery

Medical Negligence may also be due to a physician’s improper management of a complicated pregnancy or delivery situation such as:

  • Abnormal maternal bleeding or fetal bleeding
  • Compressed or prolapsed umbilical cord
  • Prolonged labor
  • Detached placenta (placental abruption)
  • Maternal infections

If you believe your child has a birth injury that may have been caused by negligent medical care, one of our birth injury lawyers may be able to help. We have more than 40 years of experience representing families like yours. Our team of registered nurses will listen to your concerns and help get your questions answered.

Author:Sokolove Law Team
Sokolove Law Team

Contributing Authors

The Sokolove Law Content Team is made up of writers, editors, and journalists. We work with case managers and attorneys to keep site information up to date and accurate. Our site has a wealth of resources available for victims of wrongdoing and their families.

Last modified: September 10, 2020