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Group B Strep Infection Attorney

group-b-strep-birth-injury-lawsuit Were you or your unborn baby the victim of medical malpractice that led to a birth injury? Did the doctor fail to manage your Group B Streptococcus (GBS) infection that led to a severe birth injury? The personal injury attorneys at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers handle medical negligence cases and can serve as your legal advocates.

Call our birth injury lawyers today at (888) 424-5757 (toll-free phone call) or use the contact form to schedule a free case evaluation to discuss your family's legal rights concerning your baby's preventable birth trauma from Group B Strep. Let us review your confidential or sensitive information and seek justice on your behalf.

What is GBS?

For centuries, Group B Strep (GBS) was considered a puerperal fever, a devastating condition affecting women in the first three days following childbirth, leading to newborn infant death. After that, the condition would rapidly progress, causing acute symptoms of severe debility, fever, and abdominal pain.

The invention of the microscope helped to identify what was causing the condition. However, GBS is still considered a life-threatening condition without proper treatment. Today, doctors protect their patients from GBS by proactively prescribing intravenous (IV) antibiotics to treat Group B Strep, including amoxicillin and penicillin, during labor and delivery to avoid complications.

Administering IV antibiotics to the mother before the baby is born transfers the medicine to the baby via the placenta. Therefore, the earlier the baby receives antibiotics through the placenta, the better if doctors diagnosed the mother with group B streptococcus sepsis.

Who Acquires Group B Streptococcus?

More than one-quarter of females carry the Group B Streptococcus (GBS), a bacteria that poses no harm to adults.

With no physical symptoms, most GBS carriers are not aware that they indeed are carriers. However, a lack of symptoms in pregnant women could cause problems by potentially transferring the contagious bacteria to their newborn child during the labor and delivery process.

The patient's medical professional must practice effective disease control to manage Group B Streptococcus (GBS) so that a pregnant woman does not sicken their infant.

Attorneys for Group B Strep Cases Fighting for Your Newborn Baby's Legal Rights

Do you suspect that your child's infection occurred as a result of medical malpractice? Then, you can take legal action against the medical professionals for their negligent actions that led to a severe infection.

Your family is entitled to receive monetary recovery if your baby contracted GBS, developed a lung infection or suffered another serious complication.

When you need a medical malpractice attorney, contact Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC. We handle Group B Streptococcus cases and have extensive experience in other lawsuits involving birth injuries in the Chicago area and across the United States.

Contact our birth injury lawyers today or fill out the contact form to schedule a free consultation if you or your child suffered a GBS infection. Let's discuss receiving financial recovery for all current and future medical care to treat the harm caused by a GBS bacteria infection paid through medical malpractice insurance.

How an Undiagnosed Bacterial Infection Harms a Child

Unlike adults, Group B Streptococcus poses a risk of serious harm to a baby who may not have the antibodies to fend off the infection.

Newborns exposed to Group B Strep bacteria risk developing a potentially deadly birth injury such as:

GBS can cause an infection in numerous body areas, including the bones, skin, lungs, and blood, leading to catastrophic brain damage. In addition, approximately 25% of all women carry the GBS bacteria as an infection of the urinary tract, wound, placenta, and amniotic fluid.

Typically, health care providers will care for women with GBS using antibiotics during labor to ensure that their children do not have a complicated delivery.

However, some babies become very sick from group B streptococcus. In addition, premature infants are more likely to acquire a GBS infection than full-term babies because the body's immune systems are not fully developed.

The Hospital Staff Must Recognize the Dangers

The medical community has long known the potential dangers GBS poses to newborns. As a result, the standard of care now dictates that doctors properly test all expected mothers for Group B Strep during the third trimester of their pregnancy— regardless if they have been tested during earlier pregnancies.

A medical professional must know the risk factors and the type of bacteria they should be checking, mainly if their patients tested positive for GBS. If the dangers of strep are pronounced, they should consider a cesarean section to prevent a severe condition or permanent injury.

The hospital or medical professional could face civil liability if a nurse or doctor failed to screen a pregnant woman for GBS or provide the newborn with proper treatment if exposed to the highly contagious infection as a part of routine prenatal care.

Taking an oral prescription of antibiotics before delivery will not help because the bacteria can quickly return before the first contractions. However, the doctor will typically prescribe antibiotics, especially penicillin, if the mother has a urinary tract infection, develops a fever during their delivery, or had a previous delivery while experiencing GBS.

Antibiotics are also prescribed when the mother has not delivered their child 18 hours after their water breaks. In addition, mothers who have gone into labor before 37 weeks and have not yet been adequately tested for GBS should receive antibiotic treatments.

Post-Birth Medical Care for Children Exposed to GBS

OB/GYNs should note the findings of all pregnant women testing positive for Group B Strep and devise a plan to minimize the baby's exposure during the birthing process. The most common method of preventing Group B Strep in babies is administering antibiotics to the mother during labor.

While antibiotics and other preventative measures may reduce a newborn's chance of contracting Group B Strep, all newborns born to women who are strep carriers should be carefully monitored to identify the earliest manifestations of the condition.

Babies with a Group B Strep infection may have one or more of the following:

  • Erratic heart rates
  • Difficulty latching on to mother's breast or feeding
  • Variation in body temperature
  • Bluish coloring (cyanosis)
  • Periods without breathing
  • Unusually anxious behavior
  • Developmental disabilities

Depending on the physician's preference and the presence of certain conditions, newborns exposed to GBS may be given intravenous antibiotics as a treatment or prophylactic to avoid serious injury. However, the medical bills for these birth injuries can be extensive.

Group B streptococcus infection can inflame the lungs (pneumonia), membranes, and fluid surrounding the brain and spinal cord (meningitis). A bloodstream infection (bacteremia) can also cause significant birth injuries.

Any health care provider who failed to screen an infected pregnant woman could face a civil medical malpractice lawsuit if the mother or baby got sick from Group B Strep.

Early-Onset GBS (Group B Streptococcus)

Doctors refer to a baby acquiring Group B Streptococcus within the first week as having "early-onset GBS disease." Most newborns with this condition will develop symptoms on their first day.

According to the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), newborns who develop GBS seven days after birth appear healthier than those who acquire early-onset GBS. The signs of early-onset GBS include:

  • Bluish skin color
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Difficulty feeding
  • Fever
  • Gastrointestinal complications including nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, or pain in the rectum or abdomen
  • Irritability
  • Lethargy, including limpness and hard to awaken
  • New or sudden worsening of intense pain
  • Skin soreness, swelling, or flushing
  • Swollen lymph nodes
  • Unexplained fatigue

Typically, a pregnant mother giving birth to a baby who develops early-onset GBS disease usually does not feel sick or display any symptoms but can potentially transfer the infection to their child.

Late-Onset GBS Disease

Medical science categorizes late-onset GBS disease as a severe blood infection involving infants acquired between 7 and 89 days following childbirth. Any group B streptococcus infection developing between 89 and 180 days after birth is considered "late, late-onset GBS," "very late GBS," or "GBS beyond early infancy."

Statistically, late-onset Strep Group B disease afflicts approximately 27 per 1000 live births. Late-onset Group B Streptococcus disease is usually accompanied by meningitis, septicemia, or other infections, including lymphadenitis, cellulitis, and bone/joint infections.

While colonization of group B streptococcus in the maternal birth canal can be critical for the mother after birth, it is not crucial for the baby, who is likely not affected by their mother's acquired blood infection.

Taking Preventative Antibiotics

Taking an oral prescription of antibiotics before delivery will not help because the bacteria can quickly return before the first contractions. However, the doctor will typically prescribe antibiotics, especially penicillin, if the mother has a urinary tract infection, develops a fever during their delivery, or had a previous delivery while experiencing GBS.

Antibiotics are also prescribed when the mother has not delivered their child 18 hours after their water breaks. In addition, mothers who have gone into labor before 37 weeks and have not yet been adequately tested for GBS should receive antibiotic treatments.

Babies most at risk for acquiring GBS are those whose mother has had preterm labor, developed a fever, or had an early rupture of membranes (water break). Other contributing factors include mothers who have had internal fetal monitoring during the labor, Hispanic or African-American ethnicity, or experienced GBS-associated bacteriuria with their current pregnancy.

Medical Malpractice Attorneys for GBS Infection Cases Involving Serious Injuries to Newborns

At Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC, the medical malpractice attorneys have significant experience with the medical standards concerning Group B Strep screening and treatment.

Did your child suffer any severe injuries related to Group B Strep caused by medical malpractice? Let's discuss your rights for your family and child. Our birth injury lawyers can provide you with legal advice about your case.

Every medical malpractice claim involving a Streptococcus Group B infection is governed by a statute of limitations where legal action must be commenced within a statutory time constraint. A failure to act within the time parameters can result in your child losing out on their legal rights for monetary recovery.

Contact our super lawyers today at (888) 424-5757 (toll-free phone call) or use the contact form to schedule a free consultation. All confidential or sensitive information you share with your experienced birth injury lawyer creates an attorney-client relationship.

Our legal team accepts all personal injury cases on a contingency fee basis to ensure you pay no upfront fees until your case is resolved through a negotiated settlement or jury trial verdict.

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Many medical malpractice cases have already been resolved through million-dollar settlements to ensure families have sufficient financial compensation for providing all the treatment and caring their child requires.

Our entire team of birth injury attorneys currently follow CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) Covid-19 (coronavirus pandemic) social distancing guidelines to ensure our clients' safety.

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