Brachial Plexus Birth Injuries

While most couples expecting a baby are not only overjoyed with happiness, they are also worried and hope for a safe delivery and healthy baby. Unfortunately, for many new parents, the delivery process does not always go as planned, resulting in serious injuries to the mother and or child. A common birth injury is brachial plexus, which damages the nerves between a baby’s neck and shoulders, due to the baby’s shoulder getting caught behind the mother’s pubic bone. Usually, a brachial plexus injury occurs from a doctor pulling too hard on the baby’s head during delivery, which has serious long-term effects for the child.

Types of brachial plexus injuries include:

  • Neuropraxia;
  • Neuroma;
  • Avulsion; and
  • Rupture.

These injuries may lead to conditions such as:

  • Erb’s Palsy;
  • Klumpke’s Palsy;
  • Horner’s Syndrome; and
  • Complete Palsy.

These conditions range in severity from having minimal use of hand and arm movement to none at all. Usually, when a baby experiences tearing in all five levels of their nerves, it is unlikely that he or she will have complete use their arm. However, when a brachial plexus injury is not as severe, it may resolve within a few months with surgery and physical therapy.

Brachial plexus injuries can be prevented through proper delivery techniques by a healthcare professional in order to avoid damage to the baby and or mother. A healthcare professional is responsible for identifying the risk factors that could potentially lead to a brachial plexus injury and mitigating those risks in order to avoid nerve damage to the baby. Furthermore, a healthcare professional’s failure to do so could result in liability for any injuries sustained, especially long-term disabilities.

While many hospitals are beginning to adopt training programs to reduce the number of birth-related injuries, the national average remains high. If you or someone you love has sustained a birth-related injury, you may be entitled to compensation. Seeking the guidance of an experienced New York birth injury lawyer may be crucial in protecting you or your loved one’s rights. Contact Levine & Slavit, PLLC’s New York City or Long Island office at (888) LAW-8088 for a free case review.

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