We’ve written before about birth injuries, but a recent case from Columbus, Georgia serves as a reminder of how often these occur and how serious they can be. The case arose from a circumcision performed in 2013 where there were a number of failures on the part of the OB/GYN practice – (1) the nurse-midwife accidentally amputated the tip of the boy’s penis; (2) they failed to take steps for it to be reattached in a timely manner; and (3) they failed to inform the boy’s mother of the amputation or that it could be reattached. The plaintiff’s attorney argued that the boy will face a lifetime of complications as a result of the injury.
We’ve been raised to trust our doctors, and the vast majority of those medical professionals are truly deserving of our trust. However, even good doctors can make mistakes. Some are reckless in caring for their patients, such as the “dancing doctor” that we covered earlier this summer. Sometimes a skilled physician makes a mistake, but then goes out of his way to cover it up and thereby further jeopardizes his patient’s health. The bottom line is that these cases happen more often than you think and can lead to a lifetime of health problems and even death.
Birth Injury Statistics
According to a 2016 study, the CDC reported that the state of Georgia has one of the highest infant mortality rates in the county. Of the 23,000 infant deaths in the country that year, birth injury was listed as one of the five leading causes. It has been estimated that anywhere from 5 to 8 out of 1,000 births will result in an injury to the infant.
Common Causes of Birth Injuries
In the circumcision case, it appears that the OB/GYN practice simply failed to provide proper medical care. Failure to provide proper medical care is one of the most common causes of birth injuries. Here are some other common causes of birth injuries:
- Oxygen deprivation
- Use of excessive or unnecessary force during delivery of the baby
- Delay in performing a cesarean section
Of course, there are many other potential causes, but these are some of the most common.
Common Birth Injuries
Birth injuries can range from mild to severe. Bruising, fractures to the arm and collarbone, and skin irritations are the most common types of birth injuries. More severe birth injuries, such as cerebral palsy and internal bleeding are less common, but can pose grave risks to the baby’s immediate and long-term health.
Medical professionals must meet a specific duty of care when serving their patients. When they fail to do so by deviating from industry standards, they may be held liable for any injuries that were caused by their actions. This may sound simple and straightforward, but it is actually quite complicated – the doctors, the nurses, the hospital, and everyone else involved will have lawyers arguing that they did nothing out of the ordinary, and the injury was a simple accident with no one at fault.
Contact a Georgia Birth Injury and Medical Malpractice Attorney today to Schedule a Free Case Evaluation
If your child is suffering as a result of a birth injury, you need an experienced attorney who can help you understand your options and get the compensation you deserve. The lawyers at Slappey & Sadd are here to help – if you’d like a free consultation, call us at 888-474-9616 or send us an email today.