The father and guardian ad litem for a child born with severe brain damage has brought a suit in Multnomah County Circuit Court against the hospital system that delivered his daughter. According to a courthouse news source, the father is claiming that his daughter’s seizure disorder and brain damage was a result of the medical negligence of the medical professionals who assisted in the labor and delivery. The complaint alleges that, given his wife’s past deliveries, her labor should have been more closely monitored, and that failure resulted in his daughter’s condition.
In 2010, the mother and father of the child went to St. Vincent Hospital to give birth to their daughter. Kaiser and Providence contracted with St. Vincent’s Hospital to use their services for labor, delivery, and newborn care. This particular child was born with the assistance of Kaiser’s medical staff.
The mother of the child delivered her other child via a Cesarean. However, for this birth the doctor and the mother agreed that they would attempt a vaginal birth before a Cesarean. The couple’s daughter was born after 12 hours of labor, and she was unfortunately found to have been suffering from the effects of the loss of oxygen to her brain. It was alleged that the loss of oxygen during labor was not detected by the hospital staff, and as a result the child suffered permanent brain injuries.
The complaint states that the hospital did not monitor the child’s heart rate, did not perform a Cesarean after fetal distress was noticed, and did not properly respond to her seizures. The complaint goes on to specify the damages that the child has endured because of her botched delivery. She has been diagnosed with cerebral palsy, reduced brain size, seriously developmental delays, motor and speech delays, seizures, and the inability to think, walk, or interact. The family is seeking $12,250,000 in economic damages and $15 million in non-economic damages, in addition to other costs.
Symptoms and Causes of Cerebral Palsy
In many cases, it can be difficult to determine how and why a child develops cerebral palsy. In the above case, the evidence presented so far indicates that the young girl’s cerebral palsy was likely a result of the prolonged and stressful delivery. The article referenced above explains that the young girl exhibited almost all of the telltale signs of cerebral palsy as soon as she was born. However, in some situations a child may not develop signs up until a year and a half. Some common signs of cerebral palsy are muscle weakness, lack of coordination, unsteadiness, delayed or abnormal development, and seizure disorders.
There are several ways that a child may develop cerebral palsy. Some ways are if the child was born prematurely, a genetic malformation, or severe illness or poisoning as a young child. In many cases, cerebral palsy is a result of a botched or negligent delivery. This can happen if the child’s heart rate or oxygen was compromised and negligently monitored.
Statutes of Limitations in Cerebral Palsy and Birth Injury Suits in Maryland
It is important that parents or guardians who suspect that their child’s cerebral palsy was a result of a birth injury take the proper steps to bring a lawsuit against the culpable parties. In Maryland, a birth injury lawsuit must be brought within five years from when the injury occurred or was discovered. It is crucial that individuals consult with an attorney to determine what their rights and remedies are and how to proceed with a case.
Has Your Child Suffered Developmental or Physical Injuries Because of a Birth Injury?
If your child has been diagnosed with cerebral palsy or another condition as a result of a birth injury, you should consider bringing a medical malpractice lawsuit against the culpable individuals. Raising a child with developmental and physical conditions often requires many doctor’s visits and specialized equipment and treatment. If your child’s condition was a result of negligence, you may hold the negligent party accountable for the medical expenses you have had to incur. Additionally, in some circumstances you may be eligible for non-economic damages as well. Contact an attorney at Lebowitz & Mzhen, LLC at 610-654-3600 to schedule a free initial consultation.
More Blog Posts:
Maryland Appellate Court Considers the Cap on Judgments Against Municipalities, Maryland Accident Law Blog, January 16, 2015.
Court Dismisses Accident Victim’s Case Based on Lack of Expert Witness Testimony, Maryland Accident Law Blog, February 23, 2015.