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Bronx Failure to Respond to Fetal Distress Injury

Monitoring a fetus during pregnancy, labor and delivery is critical to ensure the health of the baby. While still in the mother’s womb babies sometimes fall into distress. However, with proper testing and monitoring a doctor will be able to detect any problems and take steps to preserve the health of both the baby and the mother. Failure to properly monitor the fetus and respond to fetal distress could result in a serious birth injury. For example, if a fetus suffers from a lack of oxygenation, the baby may suffer a brain damage that is permanent. If you or your baby suffered a serious injury that you believe is the result of a failure of the medical staff to respond to fetal distress, it is important that you immediately contact an experienced Bronx birth injury lawyer who will help you pursue compensation for your injuries and your child’s injuries through a medical malpractice lawsuit.

Types of fetal problems

When a fetus is in distress, it is incumbent upon the obstetrician to deliver the baby quickly. There are a variety of types of fetal distress and causes of fetal distress that can be detected through proper monitoring include:

  • Decreased fetal development
  • Irregular fetal heartbeat
  • Breech positioning
  • An umbilical cord wrapped around the baby’s neck
  • Compressed umbilical cord
  • Uterine rupture
  • Placental eruption

If monitoring shows that the baby is in distress, the health care professional can take steps to help. On the other hand, if the fetus is in distress and nothing is done, the baby could suffer a variety of serious problems including delayed development, cerebral palsy, or blindness.

Types of fetal monitoring

There are two methods of fetal monitoring: external and internal. External monitoring involves strapping a device that resembles a belt around a mother’s abdomen. The device records both the mother’s contractions and baby’s heart rate. On the other hand internal monitoring involves attaching an electrode to the baby’s scalp. This type of monitoring can only be done once the mother’s cervix is dilated to 2-3 centimeters and the baby’s head is engaged. Like an external monitor, an internal fetal monitor measures the baby’s heart rate and the mother’s contractions. However, an internal monitor is more accurate. With both internal and external monitoring, the information regarding the contractions and heart rate is transferred onto strips for doctors and nurses to read.

If fetal monitoring shows that the baby’s heart rate has decelerated or fluctuates in an inappropriate manner, then it is up to the medical staff to intervene to ensure the health of the baby and the mother. In some cases intervention means an emergency c-section.

Pursuing compensation for a birth injury

Medical malpractice occurs when a medical professional such as an obstetrician, labor delivery nurse, neonatologist, or other health care professional fails to take reasonable care and as a result the patient suffers an injury. Thus, if an obstetrician fails to respond to fetal distress, and as a result you or your baby is injured, New York law allows you to hold that doctor and other medical professionals legally and financially liable. Doctors and other medical professionals who may be held accountable for failing to respond to fetal distress include:

  • Obstetrician
  • Maternal fetal medicine doctor
  • Gynecologist
  • Family doctor
  • Pediatrician
  • Neonatologist
  • Neurologist
  • Anesthesiologist
  • Surgeon
  • Labor and delivery nurse
  • Hospital
  • Birthing center
  • Midwife

Both you and your child may pursue compensation for past and future medical expenses, lost wages, loss of future earning capacity and pain and suffering.

Contact the Law Offices of Stephen Bilkis & Associates

If you suspect that you or your baby was injured because your doctor, nurse, or other healthcare professional failed to properly respond to fetal distress, do not hesitate to immediately contact an experienced New York birth injury attorney. The staff at the Law Offices of Stephen Bilkis & Associates is experienced in successfully representing clients who have suffered injuries due to mistakes made by medical professionals, as well as those injured in car accidents, truck accidents, construction accidents, and other types of accidents. Contact us at 800.696.9529 to schedule a free, no obligation consultation regarding your case. We represent clients in the following locations: the Bronx, Brooklyn, Long Island, Manhattan, Nassau County, Queens, Staten Island, Suffolk County and Westchester County.