Chicago Brachial Plexus Attorney
The pressure put upon the child's shoulder and neck by a medical professional during a difficult birth, forceps or vacuum extractor can quickly damage the delicate nerves that control the arm.
This is referred to as a brachial plexus injury (or Erb's Palsy) and can be a sign of medical negligence by the doctor.
Chicago, IL Medical Malpractice Lawyers for Shoulder Dystocia Injury
The Chicago personal injury attorneys at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC are committed to holding the obstetrician, attending physician, or hospital staff accountable when their negligence results in a baby's brachial plexus injury.
Our birth injury law firm has successfully resolved many cases and is ready to hold doctors accountable with medical negligence lawsuit to provide for your baby's past and future care. Contact our office today for a free consultation.
Causes Of Common Birth Injuries: Brachial Plexus Palsy, Erb's Palsy and Klumpke's PalsyBrachial is a term that is used to refer to the arm and Plexus is used when discussing a bundle of nerves. The brachial plexus is the nerve that controls the use of the shoulder, arm, elbow, wrist, and hand muscles.
Brachial plexus injuries can happen from many different types of injuries throughout life, however, in birthing, it may be due to poor techniques or preparation by the attending doctor.
When a child is in the delivery process, there are several risk factors that can contribute to a brachial plexus injury. The baby's weight and size need to be evaluated by the doctor to ensure that the birth canal is wide enough to accommodate the child.
Women with gestational diabetes are at an increased risk for giving birth to a large size baby, so attending physicians must monitor the baby's weight. Also, breech delivery and prolonged labor can factor into a higher risk for brachial plexus injuries.
The most common cause of brachial plexus injuries and Erb's palsy is shoulder dystocia. When the shoulder of the baby becomes wedged behind the pelvic bone of the mother or in the mother's pubic bone, the child must be carefully dislodged.
Erb's Palsy DisabilitiesA severe type of brachial plexus injury is called Erb's Palsy.
This particular form of injury refers to the loss of function of both the upper and lower arm.
When a child is delivered and the trauma of the birth has caused Erb's Palsy, the arm or arms affected will often be bent at the elbow and held against the body. These babies may require physical therapy or corrective surgery.
Disabilities from Erb's PalsySome children recover from the injury in several months, however, others are not as lucky and have permanent disabilities including:
- Paralysis. Children with Erb's Palsy may have partial or full paralysis of the affected arms. If the root of the nerve is completely separated from the spinal cord, they may have no muscle or nerve function in the arm at all.
- Weakness. Nerves that are damaged can cause weakness in the arm, wrist, and hands. This can also cause atrophy over time.
- Muscle contractions. Abnormal muscle contractions may occur, causing a tightening of the muscles that may be permanent.
Injured Children Deserve a Financial RecoveryThese disabilities can make life difficult for the child and cause them pain and discomfort for the rest of their lives.
For the family, it can mean excessive medical costs for specialized treatments and help.
When these injuries are the result of medical error on the part of the delivering physician or midwife, it is only reasonable that they compensate the family and child for the pain, suffering, and large medical costs that they must bear in a Chicago, Illinois medical malpractice claim.
Brachial Plexus Injuries FAQs
What Are the Symptoms of Brachial Plexus Injury?
According to the National Institutes of Health, a brachial plexus injury cuts off nerve communication from the upper extremities and the spinal cord making it impossible to work the hand or arm.
Large newborns during labor and delivery have an increased potential risk for a brachial plexus injury, especially during emergency or quick deliveries.
Are There Long-Term Symptoms from Forcible Delivery?
- No sensation in the arm or hand due to nerve injury from the excessive force;
- The inability to control the movement of the hand, wrist, or arms due to the infant’s shoulder injury;
- A limply hanging arm, wrist, and hand caused by damage to a network of nerves leading to paralysis of the arm;
What Are the Types of Brachial Plexus Injury?
There are different types of brachial plexus injuries including:
- Avulsion – The most severe condition where the spinal cord completely separates from the root of the nerve
- Neuropraxia – The least severe type of injury where nerves are stretched
- Neuroma – The formation of scar tissue on stretched nerves that will heal over time
- Rupture – Where portions of the nerve tears
- Brachial plexitis (Parsonage-Turner syndrome) – An extremely rare unidentifiable syndrome impacting nerves in the shoulder
Can Brachial Plexus Injury Heal on Its Own?
Possibly. Surgeons can repair some brachial plexus injuries. However, doctors often recommend physical therapy to help patients restore arm and hand function and improve recovery and range of motion, especially in stiff joints and muscles.
Not all brachial plexus injuries require treatment, especially those in infants and toddlers where an injury might take weeks or months to heal completely.
However, patients should follow up with their doctors for ongoing checkups within the first two years after the brachial plexus injury event to ensure that the condition healed completely.
Birth Injury Lawyers Committed to Chicago, Illinois Brachial Plexus Injuries & Erb's Palsy CasesWe understand how frightening it can be to learn your child has been injured during their birth. At Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC, we are personal injury medical lawyers who have worked with families in many cases as they sought financial recovery for their child's injury.
Our team of Chicago serious birth injury attorneys works with medical experts and counselors to determine the full extent of medical care that will be needed for our clients that have children that have suffered brachial plexus injuries or Erb's Palsy.
If your child was injured during birth, please contact us for one free consultation to discuss the possibility of obtaining compensation to help with your child's medical treatment.
Call our law firm today at (888) 424-5757 (toll-free phone call) or through the contact form to schedule a free consultation.
All discussions with our brachial plexus birth injury attorneys remain confidential through an attorney-client relationship.