The birth of a child can be one of the happiest days of a parent’s life, but it can also be one of the most stressful, especially when things don’t go according to plan. In some cases, medical professionals may use excessive force during labor and delivery, which can result in birth injuries, including broken bones and fractures for the infant. In many cases, these injuries could have been avoidable with the appropriate care. If your baby is born with a broken bone or other injuries, you may want to consult a birth injury lawyer in Knoxville to see if you have grounds for a medical malpractice lawsuit.
Why Do Breaks & Fractures Happen?
If you are talking with a birth injury lawyer in Knoxville about your baby’s injuries, determining whether or not negligence was the cause is the first thing that needs to happen. There are some situations where the risk of bone fractures is much greater. This includes breech deliveries and difficult labor requiring intervention with tools such as forceps or vacuums. Injury can sometimes be unavoidable, but your care providers should still do everything they can to keep your newborn safe and healthy. When these tools are not used correctly, and with the appropriate level of care and attention, they can inflict substantial damage on an infant. One of the most common birth injuries sustained in this situation is a fractured clavicle, affecting around 15 in every 1000 live births. This often happens if there is some difficulty in delivering the baby’s shoulder, especially during a breech delivery.
Missed Diagnosis of Fractures
One of the most unfortunate things about fractures in newborns is that they often go unnoticed. This means that the baby is left with unnecessary pain, and treatment is delayed. In many cases, it isn’t until the baby is at home that the parents begin to notice signs that there may be an injury. It is important to note that you can still talk to a birth injury lawyer in Knoxville to pursue legal action even if you do not discover the injury immediately. While the statute of limitations is one year from the date of injury, in cases where the diagnosis is delayed, it begins at the date of discovery.
If you have already brought your baby home from the hospital following the birth but notice any of the following symptoms, you should immediately seek medical assistance for the infant, as a possible fracture may have occurred.
- The baby appears to be in pain when lifted, moved, or held in a specific position.
- A limb has the appearance of being bent or deformed or has abnormal lumps.
- If the baby seems unable to move a limb.
- Bruising, swelling, or redness in a specific area of the body.
- Excessive crying or fussing and a lack of response to feeding.
It is important to get medical advice and to document the injury. There will likely be a number of tests and imaging required to properly diagnose the injury and determine its extent. Don’t worry about talking with a birth injury lawyer in Knoxville at that moment. The priority is getting your little one the medical treatment they need and making sure that no further damage is done. Treatment may involve splints, physical therapy, and in the worse cases, corrective surgery. Make sure all of this is documented in your baby’s medical notes. Once things have stabilized, you can turn your attention to the legal ramifications and consult with a birth injury lawyer in Knoxville.
Proving Negligence During Delivery
We have mentioned making sure that everything is correctly documented in your child’s medical notes because your birth injury lawyer in Knoxville will need to review those records and use them as evidence. In order to prove that the injury occurred because of negligence from your healthcare provider, an investigation needs to take place. The more documentation you have, the easier it is for your lawyer to get started. Expert witnesses will be called to look at the evidence and give their opinion on whether or not the injury could have been avoided with the appropriate care. It can be challenging to believe that doctors and nurses are not keeping their patient’s well-being at the forefront of their minds, but unfortunately, negligence is far more common than you might think.
Butler, Vines and Babb is a leading law firm in Knoxville, TN, with extensive litigation experience in Medical Malpractice Law, Birth Injury Law, Trucking Accident Law, Personal Injury Law, and Business Law. Contact us today at www.bvblaw.com or call 865-637-3531.
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