Injuries occurring when a baby is born are traumatic and often have long-term consequences. According to the CDC, just over 3.7 million babies were born in 2019 in the United States. Annually, it’s estimated that up to 37 babies in 1000 suffer from injuries during birth. Alarmingly, this data suggests over 130,000 births may result in infant injury each year.
What Causes Birth Injuries?
A variety of factors can lead to birth injury, and generally, these factors fall into two categories. There are birth injuries that result from the natural birthing process itself, and there are birth injuries that result from the actions of medical professionals during delivery. There is often overlap between causes, however, it is the medical professional’s job to mitigate, rather than worsen, an injury occurring during labor.
Common causes of birth injuries include:
In many cases, birth injuries aren’t severe, and infants recover quickly; however, if the infant’s birth injury is traumatic, the road to recovery may be long and costly. Serious infant birth injuries may lead to brain damage, nerve damage, spinal cord injury, bone fractures, or organ damage.
Long-Term Care After Birth Injury
The type of birth injury an infant has suffered from will dictate how long the recovery process is. For example, clavicle fractures are fairly common, and most of the time, these injuries quickly heal on their own. If a baby suffers a brain injury during the birthing process, though, the recovery will be more complicated.
Traumatic brain injury during birth can be caused by a number of scenarios, including actions that ultimately amount to medical malpractice. Unfortunately, the lasting impacts of these catastrophic injuries can lead to a lifetime of medical care. The child may never fully develop the ability to eat, walk, or speak on their own. They may also experience paralysis to varying degrees, and, in some cases, the individual injured at birth will ultimately need to reside in an assisted living facility.
A severe birth injury can affect a newborn for their entire life, and, as a result, the parents and family of the injured infant will also be impacted by the long-term expenses and struggles resulting from the injury.
Charles H. Thronson, Attorney at Law, has years of experience working with families pursuing Utah malpractice claims for infant injuries received during birth. If you feel the medical care given to you and your baby resulted in birth injuries, please call our experienced team today.