Genetic conditions are not the only cause of a birth injury. However, for some parents, this is the only thing that they know. In my opinion, based on my talks with parents contacting me about these issues, doctors and medical professionals are steering more and more parents into this area, with little to no discussion of other causes a birth injury, namely a brain injury. This birth injury educational article will look to explain another possible cause of a birth injury.
One of the most important things parents can do when faced with this situation is to ask questions of their baby’s doctors. There is nothing wrong with getting answers and advocating for your baby!
WHY IT’S SOMETIMES IN THE BEST INTERESTS OF THE HOSPITAL AND DOCTORS TO AGRESSIVELY PUSH GENETICS
It has been my experience that in some cases in which a baby has suffered a brain injury at birth, they are not genetic cases (yes genetics can cause an injury but not every case will be legitimately genetic). What non genetic cases can really demonstrate sometimes is that the baby was suffering from fetal distress and the condition was not properly diagnosed and treated, thus leading to the baby suffering a brain injury. In many cases, this avenue is not at all explained to parents.
Under Maryland law parents bringing birth injury claims on behalf of their baby must meet certain elements for the case to be successful. These four elements are: • DUTY • BREACH OF DUTY • CAUSATION • DAMAGES
When doctors and hospitals “automatically” move to genetics, what they are essentially arguing is that they are not the cause of the injury and are not responsible. To put it another way, element three of the negligence puzzle is missing. The genetics argument is a built-in defense to a medical malpractice claim. This is why I mentioned above that it is important for parents to ask the hard questions of the doctors. If a genetic condition is suggested one question of concern is whether the child meets the symptoms associated with the condition?
GENETIC CONDITIONS ARE NOT THE ONLY CAUSE OF A BIRTH INJURY
When genetics are ruled out, and mom had an uneventful pregnancy, with no issues detected during her initial check into the hospital, other areas of the possible cause of the birth injury must be investigated. Birth injury attorneys who help families get the care needed for their child, look to the actions, or in-actions of the hospital staff. One key area of review will be was the baby in fetal distress, and if the baby was in fetal distress (not tolerating a vaginal delivery), was it properly diagnosed and treated?
What we can find after investigation is that in some cases, the staff misses the fetal distress and it goes on too long. This can then lead to the baby’s fetal reserves being depleted, thus setting the baby up to suffer a brain injury. One of things parents can look for is whether the baby has been diagnosed with hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy (HIE). HIE is a reduced level of blood and oxygen, which can lead to a brain injury. Parents that understand these issues can see why genetic conditions are not the only cause of a birth injury.
HAS YOUR BABY BEEN DIAGNOSED WITH HYPOXIC ISCHEMIC ENCEPHALOPATHY?
To speak with me more about the issues present in this article, or your baby’s HIE diagnosis just pick up the phone and give me a call.
I can be reached for further discussion at 301-850-4832. I talk with families all the time about birth trauma related injuries and I would be happy to listen to your story.
Marcus B. Boston, Esq. Boston Law Group, LLC 2 Wisconsin Circle, Suite 700 Chevy Chase, Maryland 20815 bostonlawllc.com 301-850-4832 1-833-4 BABY HELP
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