For soon-to-be parents, the most important thing is giving birth to a baby that is healthy. And in the majority of cases, babies arrive into the world without any complications during the birthing process. When something does go wrong during delivery, though, it’s essential that the physician present takes actions to remedy the situation as quickly as possible. One emergency situation that can occur during delivery is shoulder dystocia. In attempting to alleviate shoulder dystocia in a newborn, a doctor may cause harm to the infant. If your baby has been harmed by a doctor’s actions during delivery, you need the help of the attorneys at Lovenberg & Associates, P.C.

What is shoulder dystocia?


Shoulder dystocia is a condition that is characterized by the baby’s shoulder being caught in the birthing canal during delivery. In order to free the baby’s shoulder from the birthing canal, physician manipulation on the part of a doctor is often required. Unfortunately, this manipulation, when not executed properly, can cause significant harm to the baby.


Shoulder Dystocia and Brachial Plexus Injuries


To clarify, shoulder dystocia is a naturally-occurring condition that is defined as a baby’s shoulders being caught behind a mother’s public bone during delivery. Brachial plexus injuries, on the other hand, are one type of injury that can result when a doctor attempts to free the baby from the birthing canal and remedy shoulder dystocia. The brachial plexus is a collection of nerves around the shoulder, and an injury to the nerve group can cause paralysis in an infant’s arm, weakness in an infant’s arm, loss of sensation, and pain. In addition to brachial plexus injuries (upper arm), Erb’s palsy (upper and lower arm) or Klumpke paralysis (the hand) may occur.


Causes of Brachial Plexus Injuries


Brachial plexus injuries are most common when a doctor:


  • Incorrectly uses forceps
  • Incorrectly uses a vacuum extractor
  • Pulls or twists on the baby’s head or shoulder
  • Puts pressure on the baby’s raised arms during delivery


If your baby has been injured because a doctor or other healthcare provider failed to take the proper actions necessary, or exercise a high standard of care, during your baby’s delivery, then you need to take legal action. Brachial plexus injuries, when severe, can cause life-long complications for your child. By filing a medical malpractice suit for damages, you can recover the costs of treatment and future treatment for your child, medical expenses, and even damages for permanent impairment if your child’s injury is not expected to improve over time.


A Boston Birth Injury Attorney Can Help You


Birth injuries are some of the most traumatic types of injuries that occur in Boston every year, and for parents, nothing is more devastating. If your baby has been hurt by a preventable doctor error, you need to take action to hold that health care provider responsible for their actions. At Lovenberg & Associates, P.C., medical malpractice attorney Douglas Lovenberg will work with you to help you build a winning case, and recover the money your child needs. For a free case consultation, call us today at 617-973-9950.