When a baby is born too early, there can be significant medical complications for the infant. Some complications can last a lifetime, causing parents to be emotionally and financially burdened for a long period of time. Situations like this are only made worse when the preterm labor and delivery could have and should have been prevented. Too often, medical malpractice is to blame for premature births and their associated complications.
Labor that begins anytime before the 37th week of pregnancy is considered preterm. It includes one or more of the following:
There are many factors that may contribute to a pregnant woman going into preterm labor, even though the exact causes are often unknown. Some of the factors that lead to preterm labor are:
The biggest concern with preterm labor is, of course, premature birth. Babies born before week 37 of gestation have increased risks of complications. Babies born early are often very small, with low birthweights. They may need assistance breathing, regulating their body temperature, eating, and fighting infection. Babies who are born very early (before 28 weeks) are even more vulnerable. They may have underdeveloped organs and may not be ready to live outside the womb.
Some of the other complications that may result from preterm birth are:
Many of the problems that premature babies suffer from are long-term. The severity of a preterm baby’s complications is usually related to how early they were born.
The practice of medicine has advanced significantly in the last several decades. That means that many babies born prematurely survive even though they were very small and vulnerable. That said, the prevention of preterm labor and delivery is the best way to ensure healthy babies.
The key to preventing birth complications due to preterm birth is prenatal care. Mothers should be carefully monitored at regular prenatal doctors’ appointments. Maternal weight gain and nutrition are closely linked to the baby’s weight gain and birth weight, so it’s important that those aspects are monitored. Good prenatal care can also help detect any problems or lifestyle habits that can increase the chances of preterm birth. Doctors and other medical professionals should always:
When doctors fail to do any of the above, and the mother or baby suffers birth injuries as a result, it may be considered medical negligence.
If your child has been diagnosed with any of the above-mentioned birth complications, you likely have questions and concerns. Were there mistakes made during pregnancy or childbirth? Could your child’s condition have been prevented? The answer to both of these questions is: it’s possible. Premature deliveries can be caused by negligence on the part of medical professionals.
When a medical professional fails to diagnose conditions or infections in a mother that result in preterm labor or delivery, the baby can suffer injuries. When doctors, nurses, or other medical professionals make mistakes that harm babies, they can be held accountable for the injuries.
However, proving that in birth injury claims in Pennsylvania can be very complicated and requires extensive legal and medical knowledge to have a positive outcome. Additionally, it can take significant resources to investigate and research the claim. At Ross Feller Casey, we have the knowledge and the resources to help you with your birth injury case.
Our birth injury attorneys have an unmatched track record of winning even the most complex lawsuits. In fact, over the last five years alone, Ross Feller Casey has recovered over $1 billion, including many cases involving birth injuries. Let us help you explore your legal options related to your child’s birth injuries. Contact our office in Philadelphia to schedule an appointment to review your case for free.
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