Research shows that approximately one in every 1,000 births result in infants suffering from bone fractures. In many unfortunate cases, these injuries could have been avoided if doctors, nurses, or other healthcare professionals had provided a reasonable standard of care for mother and child. If medical errors or negligence on the part of hospital staff resulted in your child suffering from a bone fracture or other serious injury, the law is on your side.
The New York birth injury lawyers at The Sanders Firm are available for a free consultation about your case. We will answer all of your questions about filing a medical malpractice lawsuit, and if you choose to move forward with your case, our decades of experience and substantial resources will be put to work for you and your family.
If your child’s injuries were the result of malpractice, you could be entitled to cash awards to cover medical expenses and other damages.
Call our NY personal injury attorneys today to discuss your legal options. Remember, we charge no fees unless we win your case.
Types of bone injuries
Infants can suffer from the following bone fractures during delivery:
- Clavicle (Collarbone)
- Arms and wrists
- Leg, ankle or foot
Often, medical professionals will immediately notice bone fractures in newborns. In other cases, fractures are not discovered until much later. Treatment depends on the extent of the fracture. Some babies require surgery and long-term care, while others only need medication. The most common type of bone injuries are clavicle or collarbone fractures, which often occur during delivery.
Typically, birth trauma occurs during complicated deliveries or breech deliveries – when babies are positioned in a way in which their buttocks will be delivered first. Besides a baby’s position, a number of other conditions can lead to a mother having a difficult delivery. Babies born prematurely are more fragile and, therefore, injure more easily. Larger babies, those that often weigh close to 9 pounds or more, can complicate a delivery by getting stuck in the birth canal. These circumstances may require doctors and nurses to use special instruments, such as forceps or a device known as a vacuum extractor, to remove the baby from the mother’s birth canal. The misuse of these instruments can lead to skull fractures. When doctors pull too hard to remove babies, their arms and legs can break. There is a particularly high incidence of broken bones when the baby’s head becomes lodged behind the mother’s pelvic bone.
Bone fracture symptoms
Infant bone injuries do not always present themselves immediately. Parents may leave the hospital with their newborns before realizing something is wrong. After a few days, parents may see bumps or bruises, notice their babies appear to be in pain when held in certain positions, cry consistently or are unable to move parts of their bodies.
Medical tests such as x-rays and scans can confirm whether a baby is suffering from a bone fracture. Treatment depends on the newborn’s diagnosis and the location and severity of the broken bone. For instance, collarbone fractures often do not require specific treatment. Many times, they just need to be handled more carefully. Mild arm and leg fractures may require splinting.
More serious fractures could result in surgery, physical therapy and the need for special equipment as the child ages. Long-term disabilities can mean expensive life-long medical bills.
If you believe medical malpractice led to your infant’s injuries, the NY birth injury attorneys at The Sanders Firm can help you determine whether you are eligible to take legal action to hold the responsible parties liable, and secure the funds necessary to ensure the best and swiftest treatment for your newborn.
Negligence, excessive force, bad judgment
Negligence and/or recklessness becomes an issue when medical professionals use improper techniques, incorrectly use instruments or use excessive force during the delivery or when handling the baby. Sometimes, medical professionals use bad judgment, or make mistakes due to lack of sleep, staff or resources. Whatever the reason and despite their intentions, all actions have consequences.
Compensation in bone fracture cases
New York juries routinely award substantial monetary damages—including multi-million dollar verdicts—in birth trauma cases where the plaintiffs prove that a doctor or other hospital staff members are responsible for the baby’s injuries.
One New York mother was recently awarded $5.8 million in a medical malpractice case after her son was born with a skull fracture. The mother suffered complications during delivery at a hospital in Queens. Though the birthing process was placing extreme stress on the baby, doctors continued with a vaginal delivery, pushing very hard on the mother’s abdomen to remove the baby instead of performing a cesarean delivery. The boy is permanently disabled and has trouble walking and talking.
Though NYC boasts some of the best doctors in the world, medical mistakes still happen. In the first half of 2012 alone, New York City spent $134 million to compensate injured parties for medical malpractice that occurred at public hospitals.
Contact a New York birth trauma attorney for legal advice
The birth of a baby should be one of the happiest occasions in parents’ lives, but that joy can be overshadowed when infants suffer serious trauma during delivery or shortly after they are born.
The Sanders Firm understands the devastating impact a birth injury can have on a child and his or her family. We are committed to helping victims of medical malpractice in New York secure restitution for tragic errors made by medical professionals who failed in their duty to provide adequate care.
Residents of Brooklyn, Queens, the Bronx, Manhattan, Staten Island, or Long Island are invited to call a member of our New York birth injury lawyer team to discuss their eligibility for legal compensation. The window of opportunity for filing a birth injury lawsuit in New York is slim, so victims of malpractice are urged to contact an attorney at The Sanders Firm as soon as possible. Let us start you on the road to physical, emotional and financial recovery. Call our offices today at 1.888.972.8566.
- Mayo Clinic, Disease Conditions: Broken Collarbone, http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/broken-collarbone/basics/treatment/CON-20035171
- New York Daily News, Medical malpractice lawsuits have cost city $134 million this year and range from babies crushed to crucial misdiagnoses, http://www.nydailynews.com/life-style/health/medical-malpractice-lawsuits-cost-city-134-million-year-range-babies-crushed-crucial-misdiagnoses-article-1.1145098
- The Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project (HCUP), Potentially Avoidable Injuries to Mothers and Newborns During Childbirth, http://www.hcup-us.ahrq.gov/reports/statbriefs/sb74.jsp
- Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital at Stanford, Birth Injury, http://www.lpch.org/DiseaseHealthInfo/HealthLibrary/newborn/ncomnjry.html