Taos County Birth Injury Lawyer
Advocating for New Mexico’s Tiniest Victims
Birth injuries are some of the most heartbreaking injuries that can happen to a child. When a newborn is seriously injured during the labor and delivery process, both the child and the parents can suffer lifelong consequences. In many cases, birth injuries are caused by medical malpractice, which means that they could have been prevented if the medical team had been more careful.
At The Law Office of James H. Wood PC, we handle birth injury cases on behalf of families in Taos County and throughout New Mexico. Our goal is to help you recover the compensation you are owed so that you can provide your child with the best possible care. We understand that this is a difficult time for you, which is why we are committed to providing compassionate, personalized legal guidance from start to finish.
What is a Birth Injury?
A birth injury is any type of injury that occurs to an infant during the labor and delivery process. These injuries may be caused by a variety of factors, including complications during pregnancy and medical malpractice. Birth injuries can range from mild to severe, with some causing lifelong disabilities and complications. In many cases, parents are not aware that their child has suffered a birth injury until the child is several months or years old.
What Is a Birth Defect?
While birth injuries are injuries that occur during labor and delivery, birth defects are injuries that occur while the child is still in the womb. Birth defects are typically caused by genetic factors and are not preventable. They can range from mild to severe and may cause lifelong disabilities. Some birth defects can be detected and diagnosed before the child is born, while others may not be discovered until the child is several months or years old.
Types of Birth Injuries
Birth injuries can involve many different parts of the body and can range from mild to severe. Some birth injuries are immediately apparent, while others may not be discovered until the child is several months or years old. In either case, birth injuries are always devastating for the child and the parents.
Some of the most common types of birth injuries include:
- Brachial plexus injuries: The brachial plexus is a group of nerves near the neck that control movement in the arms and hands. When these nerves are damaged during delivery, the child may suffer from partial or total paralysis in the arms or hands.
- Cerebral palsy: Cerebral palsy is a neurological disorder that affects the child’s movement and coordination. It is typically caused by brain damage that occurs during pregnancy, labor, or delivery.
- Erb’s palsy: Erb’s palsy is a type of brachial plexus injury that affects the movement of the upper arm. Children with Erb’s palsy are typically unable to move their upper arm and may not have control of their wrist or hand.
- Hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy (HIE): HIE is a type of brain damage that is caused by a lack of oxygen and blood flow to the brain. It can occur when the baby is in distress during delivery and requires immediate medical attention.
- Facial paralysis: Facial paralysis is a type of birth injury that can occur when the facial nerve is damaged during delivery. This injury typically results in one side of the baby’s face appearing droopy or paralyzed.
What Causes Birth Injuries?
Some birth injuries are caused by factors that are beyond anyone’s control, such as complications during pregnancy and preexisting medical conditions. However, many birth injuries are caused by medical malpractice, which means that they could have been prevented if the medical team had provided a reasonable standard of care. When a birth injury is caused by medical malpractice, you have the right to file a lawsuit against the at-fault party.
Some examples of medical malpractice that can result in a birth injury include:
- Failure to monitor fetal distress: Healthcare providers are expected to monitor the fetal heartbeat and other vital signs during labor. Failure to detect and respond appropriately to signs of fetal distress, such as an abnormal heart rate, can lead to oxygen deprivation and brain damage.
- Delayed or improper delivery techniques: In some cases, a timely delivery is crucial to prevent birth injuries. If a healthcare provider fails to perform a necessary cesarean section (C-section) in the presence of complications such as fetal distress, shoulder dystocia, or breech presentation, it can result in injuries to the baby.
- Misuse of forceps or vacuum extractors: Assisted delivery using forceps or vacuum extractors requires skill and careful monitoring. Improper use of these tools can lead to injuries such as facial nerve damage, skull fractures, or brain injuries in the newborn.
- Medication errors during labor and delivery: Administering incorrect medications, wrong dosages, or failing to consider the potential side effects during labor can pose serious risks to both the mother and the baby.
- Failure to diagnose or treat maternal conditions: Neglecting to diagnose and manage maternal conditions such as preeclampsia, gestational diabetes, or infections can result in harm to both the mother and the baby.
- Inadequate prenatal care: Insufficient or negligent prenatal care can contribute to birth injuries. Regular check-ups, monitoring, and appropriate interventions are essential for ensuring the health of the mother and baby throughout pregnancy.
- Communication failures: Inadequate communication among healthcare professionals during labor and delivery can lead to misunderstandings and errors. Clear and effective communication is crucial to providing optimal care and preventing birth injuries.
How Can a Birth Injury Lawyer Help?
If your child suffered a birth injury, you should speak to a birth injury attorney about your legal rights and options. A birth injury lawyer can evaluate your case and determine the best way to move forward. In many cases, it may be possible to file a medical malpractice lawsuit against the at-fault party. This can allow you to recover compensation for your child’s medical expenses, ongoing care costs, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
Birth injury cases are highly complex and require a high level of legal skill and experience. Not all medical malpractice lawyers are equipped to handle birth injury cases, which is why it is so important to choose the right attorney for your case. At The Law Office of James H. Wood PC, we have the experience and resources to handle even the most complex birth injury cases. We are not afraid to take on the biggest hospitals and insurance companies, and we will do everything we can to help you and your family maximize your entitled compensation.
Multiple Verdicts and Settlements Obtained of $1 Million or More
Tried More Than 50 Cases to a Jury & Settled More Than 150 Cases
Board Certified Trial Lawyer by the National Board of Trial Advocacy
Rated AV Preeminent® by Martindale-Hubbell®