Brachial Plexus and Shoulder Dystocia Are Serious Birth Injuries
If you or a loved one has suffered a serious birth injury, we are here to help.
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Brachal Plexis Is A Serious Birth Injury
What Is The Brachial Plexus?
The brachial plexus is a network of nerves that runs from the upper and mid-spine to muscles and skin in each shoulder. These nerves are delicate and sensitive in a newborn baby.
What Is Brachial Plexus Palsy?
Brachial Plexus Palsy, also known as Erb's Palsy, is a serious and sometimes life-altering birth injury that is all too often a result of medical malpractice during labor and delivery.
What Causes Brachial Plexus Palsy?
Serious brachial plexus palsy injuries all too often occur as a result of medical malpractice during labor and delivery. These birth trauma injuries can paralyze muscles in the hand, arm, and/or shoulder, and cause severe pain and emotional distress. The Brachial Plexus can be damaged when a physician or midwife chooses to apply inappropriate pressure (“traction”) on a baby’s neck during delivery. This usually occurs when the baby’s head has exited the vagina, but its shoulder is stuck in the pelvis—an emergency situation known as shoulder dystocia. Shoulder dystocia is an emergency because it creates pressure on the umbilical cord, which can cut off blood flow to the baby.
How Is Brachial Plexus Palsy Diagnosed and Treated?
Brachial Plexus Palsy is diagnosed through a physical examination and specific tests for muscle weakness or nerve function. In most cases, doctors first prescribe physiotherapeutic therapy to treat a brachial plexus injury. Some children undergo surgery - including nerve transfers, Subscapularis releases and Latissimus Dorsi tendon transfers - if they have not recovered within the first three to nine months of life. Tragically, many children are permanently disabled from brachial plexus injuries.
What Is Shoulder Dystocia?
Shoulder dystocia occurs when a baby's head is delivered through the vagina, but the shoulders are stuck inside the mother's body.
What Is Shoulder Dystocia Dangerous?
Unfortunately, doctors and midwives sometimes try to deliver a baby experiencing shoulder dystocia by applying downward lateral traction to the baby’s head, meaning that they stretch the neck away from one shoulder toward the other shoulder. Downward lateral traction is bad medical practice because it can stretch and tear nerves in the brachial plexus, causing paralysis (“palsy”) in a baby’s arm and shoulder. Sometimes, downward lateral traction even tears nerves out of their roots in the spine, which is known as nerve avulsion.
How Is Shoulder Dystocia Diagnosed and Treated?
Shoulder dystocia is diagnosed through tests for muscle weakness or nerve function in the affected side of the body. In rare instances, both sides of the body can be affected. Doctors usually first try physical therapy to treat a brachial plexus injury. Some children undergo surgery if they have not recovered within the first three to nine months of life. Tragically, many children are permanently disabled from brachial plexus injuries.
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At Janet, Janet & Suggs, LLC, we believe that all cases, no matter their size, deserve justice. We know that a preventable injury or death of a loved one can have a devastating impact on your life, which is why we are committed to fighting for the maximum compensation you need.
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Why Janet, Janet & Suggs, LLC
For 40 years, the award-winning drug injury lawyers at Janet, Janet & Suggs, LLC have been dedicated to uncovering wrongdoing and fighting for the justice injury victims deserve. We have a proven track record of success, having obtained substantial verdicts and settlements – many in record-breaking amounts – on behalf of our clients. We will not stop until you receive the justice you deserve.
No matter the size of your case, we know the devastating impact a preventable injury can have on you and your family. That is why we are committed to fighting for the maximum compensation you need to get back on your feet after an injury.