When a child is diagnosed with a life-changing condition like cerebral palsy, the parents’ first question is usually, “Why?” While there are many possible causes of cerebral palsy, parents often look to the mother’s pregnancy, labor, and delivery for an explanation. Did a mistake during the birth process cause the child’s condition? If forceps, vacuum extraction, or other tools were used during the delivery, did the use or misuse of these tools injure the baby?
Forceps Delivery and Brain Damage
Can the use of forceps during delivery cause cerebral palsy? While the jury is still out on this question, there is some evidence to suggest that forceps may play a role in certain cases. Forceps are sometimes used during a baby’s birth if labor is not progressing normally. They are also sometimes used if the baby’s head is too large to fit through the mother’s pelvis, if the baby is in a breech position (bottom first), or if the umbilical cord is wrapped around the baby’s neck. The instrument guides the baby through the birth canal, ideally, allowing the baby to be born without complication.
Many successful births involve the use of forceps. Unfortunately, however, the misuse of forceps can cause skull fractures and brain damage. In some cases, this damage may lead to cerebral palsy. If you believe that your child’s cerebral palsy was caused by forceps delivery, it is important to speak with an experienced birth injury lawyer to discuss your legal options. Proving the relationship between the use of forceps and your baby’s medical condition will be complex and will require substantial evidence.
Damages in a Birth Injury Case Involving Cerebral Palsy
If the improper use of forceps or other medical negligence causes a child to develop cerebral palsy, the baby’s parents may be able to take legal action in the form of a medical malpractice claim. In a successful case, the parents may be awarded damages to cover the cost of their child’s current and future medical care, as well as other expenses related to the child’s condition. Compensation may be available for:
- Hospital care
- Assistive devices and home modifications
- Specialized therapies
- Pain and suffering
- Other financial losses
Contact our Cook County Cerebral Palsy Lawyers
If your child has been diagnosed with cerebral palsy, and you believe that the use of forceps or another tool during the delivery may have played a role in causing your child’s condition, we encourage you to contact our experienced Chicago birth injury lawyers at Birth Injury Law Alliance, Ltd.. We understand how devastating it can be to learn that your child has a life-long condition, and we will do everything in our power to help you get the compensation you deserve. To schedule a free consultation with one of our attorneys, please call us today at 312-462-4200.