Having a new baby is a happy time for most families, but this joyous occasion can quickly turn to tragedy when a birth injury occurs. Birth injuries can range from bruising and broken bones to death. They are also linked to serious lifelong issues, such as cerebral palsy, that can cost families millions of dollars in treatment costs, daycare expenses, and lost wages. If you believe your child is a victim of a birth injury, it’s wise to reach out to an experienced attorney to discuss your legal options.
Contact The Mellino Law Firm at (440) 276-3535 to speak to one of our experienced and compassionate birth injury attorneys in Cleveland. We offer free consultations.
Common Causes of Birth Injuries
The March of Dimes has noted that “there are thousands of different birth defects” and about 120,000 babies are born with one each year in this country. There are also approximately 5.82 infant deaths for every 1,000 live births in the United States. Of these infant deaths, 2 percent are reported to be linked to a fatal birth injury. However, the real number may be a lot higher. When it comes to medical malpractice in general, a lot of injuries are never reported.
Birth injuries can have a lot of different causes, and certain infants are more likely to become victims of birth trauma than other infants.
Birth injuries are caused by a variety of factors, including but not limited to:
- Prolonged labor
- Breech presentation
- Cephalopelvic disproportion (when the baby is too large for the mother’s pelvis)
- Cesarean delivery
- Failure to recommend cesarean when the baby is distressed
- Using tools to assist in delivery, such as forceps or vacuums
- Internal fetal monitoring
Signs of Birth Trauma
Birth trauma refers to physical injuries sustained during birth, leading to a number of different health issues. There are many different signs of birth trauma and, while some symptoms are evident immediately, others take days, weeks, or even years to surface.
Here are some immediate signs your child may have suffered a birth injury:
- Low Apgar scores
- Inconsolable crying as if in pain
- Arched back while crying
- Labored breathing
- Difficulty with latch reflex (baby can’t nurse or take a bottle)
- Unable to swallow
- Sensitivity to light
- Inability to move arm(s)
- Visible bruises or lacerations
Additionally, some long-term signs that your child was injured during labor or delivery include:
- High blood pressure
- Low heart rate
- Low iron (anemia)
- Inability to gain weight
- Hearing loss
- Gross motor skill delays (for instance, difficulty with rolling, crawling, walking, climbing, etc.)
- Fine motor skill delays (for instance, inability to grasp a spoon)
- Cognitive delays
- Loss of bodily movements
- Lack of coordination
- Speech difficulties
- Unable to hit development milestones
- Emotional issues (inability to control temper, regulate moods, etc.)
- Intellectual disabilities
- Learning disorders
- Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD)
- Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
How Our Firm Can Help
Christopher Mellino has obtained millions of dollars in compensation for families whose children have been injured during birth because of negligence. The very first case Chris tried on his own was a birth injury case against a prominent defense lawyer with a national reputation and a long winning streak for the defense in birth injury cases. Chris’ client was awarded $4 million. That success has continued throughout his career. Most recently, we obtained a 28.7 million verdict in a birth injury case. If medical malpractice caused your baby’s injury or condition, our Cleveland birth injury attorneys can help you determine liability, hold that person/entity accountable, and pursue compensation for future expenses.
We assist clients with all types of birth injury cases, including those involving:
- Cerebral palsy
- Shoulder dystocia
- Hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy
- SSRI birth defects
- Caput succedaneum
- Brachial plexus injuries
- Broken bones
- Bruising and/or forceps marks
- Scalp lacerations from vacuums
This list is not exhaustive; if your child suffered any type of birth injury, our team can help. We offer compassionate legal counsel and aggressive representation. We are committed to fighting for the justice and fair compensation you and your family are owed.
Call (440) 276-3535 or contact us online to schedule a free case evaluation. We have offices in Cleveland and Rocky River.