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Newborn brain injuries lead to medical malpractice suit

Medical malpractice resulting in a birth injury can happen anywhere, sometimes even with well-trained medical professionals. This fact may be confirmed yet again with a potential case of medical malpractice that Marylanders should take note of.

In this case, several doctors and hospital staff are being sued by a couple who allege that the practitioners' choices resulted in complications during childbirth and the eventual development of cerebral palsy in the infant.

It was exactly these types of complications that the doctors were confident would not occur when confronted by the couple before labor. The pregnant woman had concerns over the use of Misoprostol and Oxytocin, drugs sometimes used to induce labor. The doctors assured her that the childbirth would go smoothly, and informed her that it was common to use Misoprostal and Oxytocin to induce labor.

During the childbirth, the drug was administered and the doctors began to monitor the child's heart rate. A short time later, the doctors noticed that the heart rate was slowing and attempted to vacuum extract the child. When that proved unsuccessful, a Caesarean section was performed. The child was successfully removed, but the infant's heart rate was severely reduced. The lawsuit alleges that those charged with the baby's care failed to properly monitor the fetal monitor and run certain tests that would have helped identify any issues. The suit further alleges that the care provided caused damage to the baby's central nervous system.

While many types of birth injuries or birth defects are naturally occurring, some of them are unfortunately caused by human error. When this happens, the physical, emotional, and financial repercussions can be extraordinary and long-lasting. In some instances, birth injuries can results in life-long medical complications.

Source: Dodge City Daily Globe, "Medical malpractice suit filed against two physicians, hospital," Eric Swanson, March 10, 2012

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