Birth hypoxia and brain damage can occur when a newborn takes in insufficient oxygen. Before, during, and after childbirth, newborns must receive enough oxygen circulation to fully support their body and organs.
Medical professionals are trained to monitor mothers’ and babies’ oxygen levels and recognize the signs that a fetus is in distress. When this occurs, they must take timely action to reduce the potential adverse effects of oxygen deprivation and protect the health of the baby.
Oxygen deprivation during birth is commonly due to birth complications including:
- Breech birth and other abnormal presentation
- Excessive hemorrhaging during pregnancy or birth
- Maternal shock, which can lead to placental detachment
- Mother’s oxygen level or blood pressure is low
- Placental abruption/detachment
- Shoulder dystocia
- Umbilical cord compression
- Umbilical cord prolapse
- Umbilical cord wrapped around the baby’s neck
- Uterine rupture
Inadequate oxygen levels can decrease a newborn’s blood pressure, heart rate, and blood flow away from the heart, limiting the blood flow to vital organs and tissue. When this happens, irreversible neurological or cellular damage can occur and the baby may have severe and lifelong physical damage.
Medical providers must understand the signs of oxygen deprivation and know the actions to take if these symptoms present during childbirth. Medical staff typically can detect signs of fetal distress by using a fetal monitor to observe changes in a newborn’s heart rate and rhythm, then take immediate steps to prevent harm to the baby or mother. When doctors and nurses fail to do so, they may be found liable for their negligence.
Does your child suffer from a serious injury such as birth hypoxia and brain damage? If you wish to bring legal action to compensate your child for their physical and emotional damages, please call the Michigan birth hypoxia and brain damage lawyers at the Lee Steinberg Law Firm to discuss your options. Call 1-800-LEE-FREE today for a free and confidential consultation about getting the compensation you need.
What is the Legal Basis of a Birth Hypoxia and Brain Damage Case?
Generally speaking, most of these cases involve the failure to provide adequate care according to medical standards and mistakes made by healthcare workers. Many errors made during hospital births are preventable. When women and babies are injured due to preventable errors, it can be a case for medical malpractice or negligence.
There are two main routes legal cases take when they involve birth hypoxia and brain damage. One involves the provider’s improper procedures and the other involves their failure to perform certain procedures. A medical professional may have performed a procedure improperly and in a way that constitutes malpractice, or they may have failed to meet the widespread standard of medical care.
Doctors don’t usually intend to cause harm, but in these cases, the doctor’s intentions aren’t relevant. When a doctor or other healthcare worker makes an error and it has serious consequences for the mother and/or baby, it may lead to a legal case. In some cases, an unsafe medical facility is allowing dangerous circumstances to persist and create the risk of a birth injury.
Right here in Michigan, our healthcare providers and facilities vary widely in their safety rankings with organizations like the nonprofit Hospital Safety Score. For example, 26 Michigan hospitals got an A grade, 13 got a B, 37 got a C, three got a D and one received an F. These scores are updated periodically, but it’s always unsettling to see how many Michigan hospitals have below-average safety scores.
When it comes to birth hypoxia and brain damage, hospitals and obstetric providers can be held accountable for birth injuries through lawsuits that put high dollar values on patients’ damages. This may include payment for current and future medical bills, plus the pain and suffering you and your child have experienced.
Your child may have permanent or temporary birth injuries that require surgery, ongoing doctors’ visits, extra emotional support, counseling, in-home equipment and devices, and much more depending on the extent of the injury. To secure the financial resources to cope with this situation, you may have to file a lawsuit and hold the doctor and facility responsible.
The burden is on you to prove your child’s injuries and pursue the provider for compensation. This is very difficult for the average person, but it’s why the lawyers at the Lee Steinberg Law Firm are passionate about helping people like you. Simply contact us for a consultation and describe the details of your situation.
How Do I Find Out What Happened With My Child’s Birth Hypoxia/Brain Damage?
We understand that it can be difficult to get to the bottom of what happened during your child’s birth and why they may have been left with a birth defect. When you question the circumstances, your provider may balk at providing details or become hostile toward you. They probably won’t want to broadcast that they made a mistake.
Now is the most important time in your life to hire an experienced lawyer who can start an investigation into the situation. We don’t have to rely on your doctor’s version of events. We can examine what happened, seek second opinions, and request documentation that makes things much more clear. We can use the legal process to shed light on your situation.
You may gain much more clarity about the birth hypoxia and brain damage when we seek input from a different medical professional who wasn’t involved with your child’s care. This additional medical review can be the key to determining what occurred and whether you have a legal case.
When we start an investigation, we start by reviewing the circumstances surrounding your child’s birth. At the Lee Steinberg Law Firm, we track down medical paperwork, insurance information, health provider interviews, new medical opinions, and other crucial information you’ll need to prove your claim.
We know how to uncover the truth in these situations and we have great compassion for people like you who are struggling after difficult births. Remember, this isn’t your fault. Legal action may be required to find out what happened and secure the resources you and your child need to heal from it.
What Kind of Compensation Could I Recover for My Birth Hypoxia/Brain Damage Case?
Each case is unique and compensation is hard to predict until the circumstances of your case become more clear. But don’t give up, and don’t let anyone tell you that it’s not worth pursuing a legal claim. You may have a strong case for compensation that could be the key to your child getting a lifetime of proper care.
Under Michigan law, you can pursue compensation for your child’s current medical bills, your child’s future medical bills, physical and emotional therapy, the lost income you may be experiencing from being unable to work due to caring for your child, and more.
Damages in Michigan birth hypoxia and brain damage cases may include:
- Existing medical bills that arose from the birth hypoxia and brain damage
- Compensation for future medical expenses you may incur due to your child’s care
- Lost wages and lost earning capacity due to the situation
- Pain and suffering
Who Can Bring a Birth Hypoxia/Brain Damage Claim in Michigan?
Any parent of a child who suffered birth hypoxia and brain damage due to improper care or lack of care from a healthcare provider, including those in the entire state of Michigan, can work with the Lee Steinberg Law Firm to make a claim. We have offices throughout the state of Michigan because we understand it can be difficult to travel when you are caring for a child with a birth injury.
Is There a Time Limit on Filing a Lawsuit?
Yes, there is a time limit for these cases, so please don’t wait to start your case. In Michigan, the statute of limitations to initiate a claim over a birth injury is two years from the date of the injury or six months from the date when you discovered it.
If you wait until months or years after the injury takes place to pursue a case against the medical provider, you may lose your chance to sue. Michigan courts will usually throw out any case that misses the deadline and our judges consider the statute of limitations to be very strict.
We understand if you’re worried about trying to launch a legal battle so soon after your child’s birth. That’s why we urge you to contact us and let us handle the legal details for you. Although time might not be on your side, we are always on your side! Please contact us at 1-800-LEE-FREE.
Will There Be an Investigation Into My Child’s Birth Hypoxia/Brain Damage?
There will be an investigation by your lawyer, not the police. These cases are handled civilly as legal claims against the facility and their insurance carrier with the help of a birth hypoxia/brain damage lawyer.
The Lee Steinberg Law Firm will look into what happened before, during, and after your childbirth experience, which can shed some light on what took place and which types of mistakes may have been made. Now you’ll have a more clear picture of what occurred with your C-section and your child’s birth.
To support your legal claim, we can help you seek outside opinions from a wide range of other obstetric doctors, surgeons, and medical experts who can be objective about the situation. This comes as a relief at a time when you may be feeling mistrustful of your doctor.
Our investigation will reveal details and evidence about what happened. It also gives you the ammunition you need to stand up to the medical provider and their insurance company. The Lee Steinberg Law Firm can help you end the blame game, focus on the facts, and put the responsibility where it belongs.
Will My Birth Hypoxia/Brain Damage Case Go to Court?
These cases rarely go to court. It’s far more common to end in a settlement where the hospital or birthing center agrees to compensate you without openly admitting wrongdoing and their insurance pays your claim. This can be a good thing because you get the funds you need to move forward with your life.
When a medical facility refuses to cooperate and begins to dispute the most basic facts of your birth hypoxia/brain damage case, a court battle may be unavoidable. However, they may realize at some point that it looks bad for them to drag your family to court. They may also want to keep the story out of the media and off social media, using the settlement to keep things quiet.
When you hire a lawyer, it can help immensely in this situation. With skillful negotiation, your lawyer may be able to urge the healthcare provider to settle and compensate you adequately. Their own insurance advisors and lawyers may even persuade them to settle because they have gained greater clarity about the facts of the case.
Perhaps the healthcare facility will be more agreeable once you have a lawyer on board. Even if your doctor and hospital are willing to talk about the situation, you’ll still need an experienced lawyer to ensure you are compensated fully for all of your damages. A talented lawyer can negotiate assertively and secure the dollar-value settlement you need to pay your bills, ease your suffering, and help you move forward with your life.
Please don’t accept any settlement or payout offer that’s too low! It could ruin you financially and leave you wishing you’d made a better deal when you had the chance. The Lee Steinberg Law Firm will look out for your best interests and work to get you the best deal possible.
Helpful Birth Hypoxia and Brain Damage Resources:
- Michigan Birth Hypoxia and Brain Damage Attorneys
- ASK LEE: Request Free Consultation Free case evaluation by phone: 1-800-LEE-FREE
- Legal Information About Birth Hypoxia and Brain Damage
- Medical Information About Birth Hypoxia and Brain Damage
Frequently Asked Questions About Birth Hypoxia and Brain Damage Cases
Talk with your lawyer at the Lee Steinberg Law Firm for advice that is specific to your case. Here, we provide some general information about birth hypoxia and brain damage cases.
Q: How common are birth hypoxia and brain damage?
Birth hypoxia, which is sometimes classified medically as perinatal asphyxia, happens in 2 to 10 per 1,000 at-term births according to the World Health Organization. About 3 in 1,000 newborn babies suffer from some form of birth-related brain damage.
Q: Does it matter whether the doctor meant to cause harm?
No, it doesn’t matter whether the healthcare professional intended to hurt you or your child. It’s unlikely that they meant to cause harm but their good intentions can’t erase what happened. You can still make a legal claim for birth hypoxia and brain damage.
Q: How long does a birth hypoxia/brain damage case typically take?
A: Generally, a settlement in this type of case takes far less time than a case that goes to court. You’re looking at months, but probably not years. It will take time to gather the medical records and additional medical reviews for your case. To get a better idea of the timeframe, call 1-800-LEE-FREE to talk about your situation in a confidential and free discussion.
Q: My doctor urged me not to start a lawsuit yet. Should I wait?
A: Don’t let your doctor stall you. Here in Michigan, you must sue within two years of the injury or six months of becoming aware of it. The clock is counting down the day your child is born. Speed matters because evidence can be lost as time goes by.
Important Questions to Ask a Michigan Birth Injury and Brain Damage Lawyer
Before you hire a Michigan birth hypoxia/brain damage lawyer, ask about their success rate with cases like yours. Birth injury cases, including those that involve hypoxia and brain damage, can be extremely difficult to prove without excellent legal representation.
Ask your lawyer questions like:
- Do you have experience going up against big Michigan hospitals?
- Have you gotten good results in other birth hypoxia/brain damage cases?
- How will you help me investigate what happened?
- Do you have a good reputation with Michigan judges and courts?
At the Lee Steinberg Law Firm, we have outstanding credentials when it comes to representing our clients in complex cases involving malpractice, negligence, and birth injuries. We understand how challenging your situation is and we will be by your side, helping you plan for a better future.
Please contact the Lee Steinberg Law Firm today at 1-800-LEE-FREE to get in touch with a qualified, experienced lawyer nearest to you in Michigan. You will receive an evaluation of your case entirely free of charge.
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