Complications During Labor and Delivery
For many expectant parents, the very hint of imminent labor and delivery is enough to get them rushing to call the doctor and get to the hospital. This is the moment they’ve been waiting for, the moment for which they’ve spent nine long months preparing. Aside from the natural feelings of fear or anxiety that may be present, there’s the excitement of finally being able to see and hold the baby they’ve been expecting. For many parents, this is a joyous moment.
Unfortunately, things don’t always go as planned. Despite the high standard for maternal and infant care in the United States, injuries due to complications during labor and delivery still occur. When childbirth complications happen, parents are often given no reasons; fetal injuries and even deaths are often explained away as being something that ‘just happened’. If you or someone you know is expecting a child, it’s important to be aware of common complications that can occur during labor, and what you can do to reduce the risk of injury to both mother and child.
Common Labor and Delivery Complications
The birth of a baby is known to be unpredictable, and labor and delivery is as unique to each person as each baby is to its mother. At the same time, doctors and hospital staff can give expectant parents some idea of what to expect, in terms of how to know when labor is progressing, common stages of labor, and physical characteristics of delivery. Doctors and their staff are also very much aware of what can potentially go wrong in this situation, yet often don’t inform parents of potential complications of childbirth. This is where parents need to educate themselves. According to the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD), common complications during labor and delivery include:
- Slow or non-progressing labor
- Problems with the baby’s heart rate
- Lack of oxygen to the baby
- Abnormal position or presentation of the fetus
- Problems with the placenta
These complications – and the need for doctors and hospital staff to act quickly to counter them – can result in serious and potentially life-altering disabilities to the newborn. Newborn injuries due to labor and delivery complications include:
- Head trauma due to forced extraction, such as with forceps or vacuum assisted deliveries
- Brain injuries due to lack of oxygen
- Reduced glucose levels in long deliveries
- Shoulder dystocia, leading to damage of the nerves in the shoulder, arm or hand
- Amniotic fluid embolism
For laboring moms, problems with medications to induce labor, VBAC procedures, and placental or cervical issues can result in a host of problems, including excessive bleeding, a leading cause of maternal death.
Call Our Experienced South Carolina Medical Malpractice Attorneys
If you or a loved one has suffered complications during labor and delivery that resulted in injuries to the mother or baby, contact our experienced South Carolina Medical Malpractice attorneys today. In cases of medical malpractice, it’s important to act quickly. At Anastopoulo Law Firm we can help you determine what happened and who is responsible.
We may be able to help you recover damages in dealing with the hardship of medical expenses, as well as punitive damages from responsible parties. We have offices in Charleston and throughout South Carolina. Call Akim Anastopoulo today for a free review of your case.