Peoria Birth Injury Lawyer
Birth injuries can have long-lasting effects on children and their families. However, in some cases, these injuries are preventable if medical professionals have provided proper care promptly.
Do you believe your baby has suffered a birth injury due to the negligence of a healthcare provider in Peoria? If so, contact the personal injury lawyers at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC immediately. We will fight for you and your family every step of the way until we get justice for you!
Call our Peoria personal injury lawyers at (888) 424-5757 (toll-free phone number) or use the contact form today for immediate legal advice and schedule a free consultation. All confidential or sensitive information you share with our legal team remains private through an attorney-client relationship.
The Devastation and Financial Toll of Raising a Child with a Birth Injury
Aside from the financial toll, raising children with cerebral palsy can be emotionally and mentally taxing, often resulting in undue stress and conflict among the child's family members.
In addition, a baby with a serious injury might require extensive therapy from the day they are born, as well as expensive surgeries and treatments.
In many cases, children will require care for their entire lifetime as they face physical and mental challenges.
The financial burden often continues throughout childhood as parents have to pay out-of-pocket for services not covered by insurance. In addition, therapy, prescriptions, surgeries, specialist visits, and equipment for the child are often needed to ensure the child's proper development.
If you have a child who has suffered from a birth injury in Peoria due to medical negligence, you are likely asking yourself what your next step should be. First, call our Chicago medical malpractice lawyers at (888) 424-5757.
Neglect and Malpractice in Peoria Hospitals and Clinics
Numerous studies have shown that medical negligence is rising, and some of those cases involve birth injuries. For example, according to a study using 2005–2009, more than 4% of hospital admissions result from a birth injury.
Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC, has compiled important information regarding this subject and its implications on children whose parents seek legal action to hold negligent medical professionals accountable.
Some of the leading causes of infant injuries during child delivery:
- Forceps Delivery: According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), the use of forceps during delivery can be beneficial and lifesaving in certain circumstances. However, if used incorrectly or with little assessment, it could lead to injury.
- Uterine rupture occurs when the uterus is breached by a misplaced delivery instrument such as a pair of forceps; it is an emergency and can result in significant blood loss.
- Cesarean Section: According to the American Pregnancy Association (APA), five out of every 1,000 births require a cesarean delivery based on data from 2013. Although this is not always necessary, it must be performed by an experienced medical professional who performs this surgery regularly.
- Failure to Diagnose: In some cases, a baby is born without a clear indication of serious health conditions such as heart or respiratory problems. However, if physicians do not take the time to conduct proper assessments and evaluations, this could have dire consequences for the newborn. In addition, when doctors fail to diagnose certain conditions promptly, it can result in injury and long-term damage.
- Misdiagnosis and Delayed Diagnosis: Although most infants born healthy do not need extensive medical care, there are those whose parents notice serious conditions such as seizures and other physical and mental issues. When physicians fail to diagnose these obvious problems quickly, it can lead to more significant issues down the road for children who receive delayed or incorrect treatment.
- Failure to Follow Accepted Standard of Care: In some cases, there are universal standards of care that doctors and other medical staff must follow when evaluating and treating patients. When they fail to do so, it can result in serious injury or death for the child.
Medical malpractice cases can be complicated and require extensive investigation and litigation to prove the defendant's negligence led to the injury. It was a direct result of their behavior rather than other factors such as an emergency or complications during childbirth.
Negligent Medical Professionals in Illinois
In Illinois, a birth injury case must meet certain standards to be successful under state law.
First, the plaintiff must establish that the defendant did not exercise due care and breached a duty of reasonable care in their duties as a medical professional.
Defendants can include physicians, nurses, midwives, maternal-fetal medicine specialists, and others who have been responsible for the birth process.
Hospitals and medical centers can also be civilly liable for birth injuries caused by medical malpractice.
What Constitutes Medical Malpractice? According to Illinois law, three types of situations can constitute medical malpractice which includes:
- Failure to exercise the degree of care in diagnosis and treatment that a reasonably careful person would have exercised under similar circumstances.
- An intentional act or omission that was not a reasonable medical judgment; and 3. The use of a foreign object that was left in the body following surgery causes tissue damage.
In addition, if a doctor's negligence caused an injury to the child's mother during her pregnancy, it can also be considered medical malpractice.
In some cases, parents file wrongful death lawsuits on behalf of their children who died during childbirth or due to medical malpractice. It is necessary to consult with an experienced Peoria birth injury lawyer who can build a compelling case.
Medical Malpractice Statistics
According to the ACOG, at least 10 percent of pregnant women experience an injury during childbirth that directly results from medical malpractice.
In some cases, the injuries are minor and require only basic care from a doctor or prenatal specialist without further complications.
However, there are many instances where a child's birth injury can be life-threatening, requiring extensive surgery and treatment to ensure they survive and have a normal quality of life. In some cases, the damage is so severe that it requires lifelong medical care to monitor their condition.
In Illinois, doctors treat hundreds of patients each year who suffer from birth injuries which can be life-altering or result in death. Four million infants are born prematurely every year worldwide.
The Global Burden of Disease Study, published in The Lancet, found that preterm birth is one of the top ten causes of death for children under the age of five.
In addition, another study conducted by the Department of Health and Human Services stated that over 50 percent of American adults suffer from at least one chronic illness such as diabetes, heart disease, or cancer.
Caring for Children with Cerebral Palsy and Other Birth Injuries Can Cost Millions
Recoveries over $1 million are common for our Peoria birth injury lawyers due to the regular and extensive care that your child will need. From regular doctor visits and therapy to special procedures required to help your child thrive, the cost of medical care can add up quickly.
It may worsen if your family's income takes a hit due to a parent's choice to stay at home to provide for your child's day-to-day needs.
Not every case of cerebral palsy is the result of medical malpractice, but if your child suffered an injury during birth or shortly after, it is possible that doctors and nurses failed to take appropriate action to prevent the development of this condition.
Most children suffer some minor form of injury during birth. The response of medical professionals to any complications often determines whether the child is discharged in healthy condition and without incident.
Birth Injury Lawyers Can Secure Financial Compensation on Your Behalf
The Peoria cerebral palsy attorneys of Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC are committed to helping provide for everyone impacted by the diagnosis of cerebral palsy or another birth injury, including those tasked with providing for the child's special needs throughout the rest of their childhood.
There is no reason you should be forced to cope or care for your child alone, and we will help you access the compensation, support, and resources that you and your child will need to lead a happy and productive life both now and in the future.
The Injuries Most Commonly Associated with Peoria Cerebral Palsy Claims
While many different injuries are responsible for cerebral palsy, the most common causes are linked to hypoxia and jaundice, resulting from other injuries or complications during pregnancy, labor, or following birth. The most common causes of cerebral palsy can include the following.
- Fetal distress: While fetal distress is most often associated with problems during delivery, it can occur at other points during the last trimester of pregnancy. Doctors need to be aware of complications that the mother is experiencing and properly monitor the child for symptoms of distress. The attending nurse staff also needs to correctly implement a fetal monitor so that the doctor can be alerted quickly if the child has displayed signs of distress.
- Jaundice following birth: Many injuries can result in jaundice, and the majority of them are minor and expected. Bruises caused by device-assisted deliveries and other injuries that cause the rupture of small blood vessels can result in the release of bilirubin into the blood, which causes the yellow discoloration of the skin and eyes indicative of jaundice. Since infants' livers cannot process this substance, nurses must detect this condition and treat it before elevated bilirubin levels can damage the brain.
- Infections before and after birth can have devastating effects on infants whose immune systems are not: Equipped to fight off pathogens and bacteria. The impact of infection can cause serious damage to vital organs, including the brain.
- Misinterpretation of test results: Reading incorrect test results can have serious consequences. It may allow a doctor to miss a diagnosis or order the wrong form of treatment for the mother or child. It may also allow complications to go undetected, which would have allowed the doctor to take preventative steps to protect the child.
If it can be proven that your child's injuries were the result of negligent medical care, you may be able to recover the compensation needed to meet your child's needs both in the present and the future.
Our Peoria personal injury lawyers can help you determine whether the doctors or nurses caring for your child appropriately acted so that you can decide how best to proceed with your claim.
Valuable Resources for Children with Cerebral Palsy
In addition to helping you recover the compensation needed to provide for your child, we can assist you in finding the support and resources your child will require long after you are unable to provide care yourself.
The United Cerebral Palsy Sequin of Greater Chicago provides access to technology and assistance that your son or daughter can depend on both during his or her development and after entering adulthood. To discover available resources and programs, you can visit http://ucpseguin.org/ or call (708) 863-3803.
Compensation Available for a Birth Injury Lawsuit
Economic and non-economic damages are usually compensated through a birth injury lawsuit.
Economic losses or expenses connected to the baby's injuries are considered economic damages, may include:
- Hospital expenses, medical bills, and rehab costs.
- Lost wages.
- The injured child's future lost earnings.
- Non-economic damages are connected to the injuries, pain and suffering of the baby. They are usually set at a certain amount of money each year affected by the injury. If your child is expected to have lifelong medical problems or disabilities, you can consider that when determining how many years they should be compensated.
These non-economic damages are divided into two categories: past and future. Past non-economic damages include compensation for your child's medical costs, pain, and suffering.
Future non-economic damages compensate the injured baby for their expected future expenses if they have permanent injuries or disabilities that will continue to affect them after their parents pass away.
If the hospital provides improper care and medical treatment, you may be able to receive compensation beyond the standard amount of money you would receive for your child's injuries.
This compensation is referred to as punitive damages. It is awarded if it can be proven that the hospital acted in a negligent, outrageous, or egregious way.
Punitive damages are meant to punish the hospital or doctor for negligence to discourage others from acting similarly.
Our Peoria lawyers have years of experience successfully representing families who have endured birth injuries at the hands of negligent doctors and nurses.
We understand how difficult this situation can be for you. Still, our compassionate attorneys are committed to taking on your case and advocating for the resources and compensation you need to face your future.
We can provide a free case evaluation so that we can carefully review your circumstances and discuss with you whether filing a personal injury lawsuit is right for you.
Don't hesitate to contact us today to get more information on how we may be of assistance.
Our attorneys can assist you in creating a life care plan that outlines all of your child's expenses because of the birth injury, as well as any future costs. This strategy may address both economic and non-economic losses so that you will be able to seek compensation.
We will discuss this plan with you and work on your behalf to ensure that you receive the compensation needed for a successful claim.
Filing Personal Injury Lawsuits for Birth Injuries
To win a birth injury case, your attorney must prove all of the following:
- Your child was injured or suffered from some medical mistake made during the delivery
- The defendant was at fault for your child's injuries
- You incurred economic and non-economic damages as a result of your child's injuries
- You or your attorney can prove your damages are real
Successfully resolving your personal injury case can be accomplished by negotiating a settlement of an acceptable amount with the defendant's insurance company or taking the case to trial.
About 95% of all personal injury cases and wrongful death lawsuits are settled out of the court.
The remaining birth injury cases are heard in court before the judge and jury, who will decide if the accident victims' case has merit and its worth.
Our central Illinois birth injury attorneys prefer to resolve personal injury cases without filing a lawsuit. Still, if this is not possible, our law firm is ready and able to take care of you in court.
A personal injury case involving a catastrophic birth injury usually requires estate planning to ensure that the injured family member will have sufficient compensation for the remainder of their life.
Usually, the responsible party (healthcare professionals) will cover medical expenses and intangible damages, including pain, suffering, and mental anguish.
Types of Birth Injuries
Brain injuries account for 35% of all birth injuries, according to the March of Dimes. 'It's important that healthcare providers establish safe practices rather than wait until an incident occurs,' warns March of Dimes president Dr. Jennifer L. Howse, 'taking the time to review what went wrong after a tragedy can help prevent similar accidents from occurring in the future.'
Some other common injuries include:
- Erb's Palsy: Injuries to the brachial plexus caused by improper forceps use or by the doctor pulling at the baby's head while emerging from the vaginal canal
- Cerebral Palsy: Disorders that primarily affect control over movement and coordination, which problems may cause during labor or delivery
- Mental Retardation: Defects in brain function to where a person's intelligence is significantly below average
- Spina Bifida: A defect in the spine that usually occurs during the first month of pregnancy when the neural tube does not close properly, resulting in an opening in the spin
- Miscarriages: Loss of a fetus before it can survive outside of the uterus. Miscarriages are most often caused by uncontrolled bleeding in the mother or genetic abnormalities in the fetus
Childbirth injuries can occur to mothers as well, which include:
- C-Sections: A Cesarean section is an operation where the uterus is opened through an incision in the abdomen to deliver a baby. It typically results in scarring of the uterine wall and difficulty in future pregnancies.
- Fetal Distress: A condition where the baby is deprived of oxygen during labor, resulting in injury to the central nervous system and other organs.
- Uterine Ruptures: The uterine muscle tears away from the uterus wall, which may cause internal bleeding and blood transfusions.
Injuries from traumatic childbirth can have long-term consequences for both mother and child.
They are usually the result of medical negligence in some way, which is why it is extremely important to contact an experienced Chicago birth injury attorney after your injury or that of a loved one.
The most common claims in the Peoria area of care include:
- Failure to diagnose
- Failure to treat
- Improper nursing care and treatment
- Improper equipment, supplies, and facilities used during the delivery
- Negligent administration of anesthesia or medication
These claims can arise even if you attempted natural childbirth without painkillers or epidural (which is safer than a cesarean section but still has a certain risk of injury) and did everything by the book.
Most birth injuries stem from a medical professional's negligence, which is why it is so important to have experienced representation on your side.
Our Peoria County Personal Injury Attorneys Will Review Your Peoria Personal Injury Claim for Free
Was your child diagnosed with cerebral palsy, and do you believe this is due to an injury sustained at birth?
If so, Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC may be able to help you pursue the compensation you are entitled to for your child's care.
Our Peoria, IL, personal injury attorneys have extensive experience. Access to medical experts, social workers, economists, and other community resources gives us the ability to provide services of unparalleled quality to our clients, and we back our work with a guarantee.
Contact our law firm today to speak with award-winning Peoria, IL, personal injury lawyers so that we can get to work on your behalf right away.
Once we have had the opportunity to investigate the details of your claim, we can properly advise you regarding your legal options and strategy.
We also assure every client that we will do everything in our power to recover damages on their behalf - and our services will be free of charge if we fail to do so.