What is C-Section Delay?
As unique as each person is, so was his or her birth. Welcoming a newborn into the world can look drastically different depending on the circumstances of the birth and the health of both mother and child. For a variety of reasons, a vaginal delivery is not always a possibility. In this event, babies are delivered via a procedure referred to as a C-Section.
A Cesarean section – also called Cesarean delivery or C-section – is a surgical procedure used to deliver a baby through an incision in the mother’s abdomen and uterus. These cuts allow doctors to deliver a baby non-vaginally, which in some cases could cause significant harm or injury to mother, newborn, or both. A Cesarean section may be planned ahead should the mother develop complications or if she has had a previous C-section. Many times though, the need for a first-time C-section doesn’t become obvious until labor has already begun, making the procedure both urgent and highly sensitive.
When a vaginal birth is deemed dangerous, doctors can order a C-section. Once a vaginal birth is no longer a safe delivery option, time is of crucial importance for the health of both mother and child. Any delay in ordering a C-section can have severe consequences, including death and permanent injury. Some of the reasons a doctor may order a C-section can include:
- Abnormal position of the baby
- Multiple births, including twins, triplets, etc.
- Prolonged labor that does not progress after several hours
- Problems with the placenta
- Umbilical cord wrapped around baby’s neck
- Existing medical conditions, including heart issues, spine problems, etc.
- Infections the mother may pass to the baby during a vaginal birth
- The baby suffers from an anomaly or disorder
- Not enough oxygen is getting to the baby
When any of these cases arise, a C-section may be the only chance for a healthy birth. However, when healthcare workers delay ordering or carrying out a Caesarian, mother and child can suffer irreversible injuries.
Cesarean Delay Complications
Cesarean delays have the potential to end catastrophically; and, as a consequence of failing to order and perform a critical C-section, a child could suffer birth injuries that require lifelong medical treatment. Obstetricians and delivery staff are specially trained to detect urgent medical issues before they reach critical levels. Mothers and their loved ones trust the physician and delivery staff will exercise proper judgement and perform appropriate treatment to ensure the health and safety of both mother and child before, during, and after delivery. When physicians fail to perform necessary testing, check-ups, or act in a manner that causes the delay of a needed C-section, newborns and mothers suffer. These negligent actions can lead to the following birth injuries:
- Cerebral Palsy is a debilitating injury marked by limited movement and speech that affects a child for the rest of their life, often requiring intense medical treatment and on-site caretakers.
- Brain Damage can be caused by a lack of oxygen to the head, which can lead to both physical and mental delays.
- Shoulder Dystocia is a condition that impairs a baby’s movement of the arm and shoulder. The condition could be permanent depending on the severity of the damage.
- Brachial Plexus Injury is a serious condition that affects a baby’s spine and brachial plexus nerve group by compressing, separating, stretching or tearing nerves. Nerve damage can leave a baby’s arm paralyzed temporarily or permanently and may require additional surgery.
- Erb’s Palsy is a permanent movement disorder that can result from a brachial plexus injury or shoulder dystocia, affecting the fifth and sixth vertebrae of the spine. This type of injury can also be caused by an injury to the neck during childbirth.
- Death is an unfortunate consequence when a physician fails to order a C-section in time. A mother and child’s lives depend on the actions taken by their physician as soon as complications are detected.
Birth injuries like these often come with large medical bills, in addition to the cost of the lifelong care the child will need. This places an unimaginable burden and stress on parents who trusted medical professionals to safely deliver their baby and provide a healthy recovery for mother and child.
Philadelphia C-Section Delay Attorneys
Welcoming a child into the world should be a cherished memory. When physicians and delivery staff act negligently, a C-section procedure can be delayed or even botched, causing serious and even permanent injury. In addition to harming a fragile newborn, C-sections can also injure the mother. If you or your child were injured as the result of a delay in ordering a Cesarean section, contact the Philadelphia C-section malpractice attorneys at Lopez McHugh LLP today for a no-cost consultation. Physicians and medical professionals should be held responsible for their negligent actions, and no mother or baby should have to suffer.