Pittsburgh Birth Injury Lawyer
Experienced Medical Malpractice Lawyers Serving Victims of Birth Injury Accidents Throughout Western Pennsylvania and Beyond
Each Pittsburgh birth injury lawyer at the medical malpractice law firm of Berger Lagnese & Paul, LLC has seen first-hand the anxiety, sorrow, and fear that parents experience when a child is born with a birth injury. That is one reason we fight so hard to obtain justice for these parents and their babies. Another reason we fight for these children is that we understand the challenges of caring for a child with a birth injury. Finally, we want to send a message to the medical community that birth injuries caused by negligence are not acceptable.
Have Questions About Your Child’s Birth Injury? We Can Help, Tell Us What Happened.
Most births are uneventful, resulting in a beautiful baby and tired but joyful parents. However, some births do not have a happy outcome. An infant may come into the world with an injury caused by a mistake during the labor and delivery process. The results of these mistakes include:
- Cerebral Palsy and other injuries caused by lack of oxygen to baby’s brain
- Erb’s Palsy and Shoulder Dystocia
- Brain damage from placenta previa or other causes
- Baby Brain Injury
- Hypoxic-Ischemic Encephalopathy
- Perinatal Asphyxia
The attorneys at Berger Lagnese & Paul, LLC handle cases like these as well as matters involving other birth injuries such as severe bruises, broken bones, skin abrasions and lacerations, hypoxia, hemorrhage, kernicterus resulting from jaundice, persistent hypertension, skull fractures, and other conditions.
Get Advice From An Experienced Birth Injury Lawyer. All You Have To Do Is Call 412-471-4300 To Receive Your Free Case Evaluation.
Common Causes of Birth Injuries in Pennsylvania
The most common causes of birth injury include:
- Baby Brain Injury
- Birth Asphyxia
- Birth Defects
- Birth Injury To Mother
- Brain Damage From Placenta Previa
- C-Section Injuries
- Cerebral Palsy
- Erb’s Palsy
- Fetal Distress
- Forceps Injuries
- Hypoxic-Ischemic Encephalopathy
- Lack Of Oxygen To Baby’s Brain
- Obstetrical Malpractice
- Perinatal Asphyxia
- Placenta Previa
- Shoulder Dystocia
- Uterine Rupture
An obstetrician, nurse, midwife, anesthetist, or any other medical provider participating in a birth could perform negligent actions such as these that may have catastrophic consequences.
Consequences of Birth Injuries
Birth injuries range from minor to severe. Usually, bruises and lacerations resolve themselves without medical intervention. But other injuries can affect a child forever. Children injured during birth may have:
- Developmental disabilities
- Lack of coordination
- Breathing problems
- Failure to grow and thrive
Depending on the nature and severity of the injury, a child may require special education, physical therapy, assistive devices, surgery, medications, and personal care attendants. Many families have difficulties shouldering the cost of care and treatment for their child.
Baby Brain Damage
We filed and settled a case against Uniontown Hospital and an obstetrician for failing to timely deliver a baby who during labor suffered over 45 minutes of oxygen deprivation due to compression of the umbilical cord.
Baby Brain Injury
We settled a case against obstetricians in Uniontown PA for a little boy who suffered brain damage because when the doctors did a proceedure called an external cephalic his heart rate went down.
The Challenges of Birth Injury Cases
Medical negligence is not the cause of every birth injury. To bring a successful claim against a doctor or hospital, the plaintiffs (usually the parents) must be able to prove that the provider did not act in accordance with the usual standard of care. Most birth injury cases rely on the testimony of medical experts to establish the standard of care and to show how the defendant (the doctor or hospital) failed to meet that standard. Finally, the case must show that the failure to meet the accepted standard of care directly caused the injury. It is best to hire experienced medical malpractice attorneys familiar with the intricacies of birth injury lawsuits.
Types of Cases That Our Pittsburgh Birth Injury Attorneys Handle
At Berger Lagnese & Paul, LLC in Pittsburgh, PA, we represent clients who have been injured, or whose babies have sustained life-altering injuries, as a result of medical negligence during labor or delivery. Here are some of the types of birth injury cases that we handle:
Contact a Pittsburgh Birth Injury Lawyer to Learn More About Birth Injury Claims
Our knowledgeable attorneys know how to present strong birth injury cases. We consult with well-known experts and develop compelling testimony in our efforts to obtain justice for our clients and their children. To learn more about birth injuries and to determine whether you might be eligible to file a birth injury lawsuit, contact our law firm. There is no fee until we win your case.
The birth of a child is meant to be one of the happiest events for any family. However, in some cases, the child and/or mother may suffer injuries during the delivery process. Unfortunately, many instances of birth injuries are the result of the negligence of one or more members of the delivery team. When negligence results in a birth injury, the injured baby or mother and their family should be entitled to compensation.
For more than 30 years, the Western Pennsylvania birth injury attorneys at Berger Lagnese & Paul, LLC have helped families obtain the financial recovery and justice that they need and deserve after suffering injuries due to the negligence of medical professionals. Our attorneys believe that people who harm others through their negligence should be held responsible to provide compensation to the people they injure.
Contact Berger Lagnese & Paul, LLC today to schedule a free case evaluation with one of our dedicated, knowledgeable attorneys who can help you understand your legal rights and options and how our firm can help your family obtain the compensation you need and deserve.
Frequently Asked Questions About Pittsburgh Birth Injuries
Birth injuries are injuries that a baby suffers during the birthing process. Birth injuries also include injuries that a mother may suffer during delivery.
A birth injury is a physical injury or condition that an infant suffers during the delivery process. Conversely, a birth defect is a physical or medical condition that a baby develops while growing in the mother’s womb. Birth defects typically have genetic causes or environmental causes.
Birth injuries typically have some sort of physical cause. Although birth injuries can be caused by honest accidents during the delivery process, in many cases they are caused by the negligence of the medical professionals attending the delivery.
Fortunately, birth injuries are relatively rare occurrences. According to the National Healthcare Quality Report, approximately six to eight out of every 1,000 infants born in the U.S. suffer a birth injury during delivery.
Birth injury rates for mothers are highest for mothers aged 25 to 34. The injury rate for non-instrument-assisted births is approximately 30 percent lower than the injury rate for instrument-assisted births. Injury rates increased during births via cesarean section as the age of the mother increased.
A birth injury is deemed to be the result of medical malpractice if a medical professional’s breach of the applicable standard of care was the direct cause of the birth injury. Put another way, the baby’s birth injury would not have occurred but for the malpractice. In some cases, medical experts may agree that your baby’s birth injury was inevitable even with the exercise of due care. However, if your baby’s birth injury would not have occurred had a medical professional not made a mistake or failed to exercise due care during delivery, the birth injury may be deemed preventable.
If you believe that your baby has suffered a birth injury, it is important that you speak with an experienced medical malpractice attorney. Pursuing a claim for compensation for a birth injury caused by medical malpractice requires a unique combination of knowledge of medical principles and of the law that only a knowledgeable medical malpractice attorney is likely to possess. Having dedicated, experienced legal counsel at your side will put your family in the best position to recover the compensation you and your family need and deserve.
Many people assume that if a baby is born with an injury or other medical condition that it is the result of a birth injury caused by medical malpractice. However, this is not always the case. You may have a birth injury claim if medical experts agree that your baby’s injuries were caused by your delivery team’s breach of the applicable standards of care in your case. If your baby’s condition was not caused by some negligent act or omission, then you likely do not have a birth injury claim.
In Pennsylvania, you have a limited period in which to file a lawsuit for damages arising from your baby’s birth injury. This period is called the statute of limitations. Under Pennsylvania law, the statute of limitations on a lawsuit for birth injuries arising from medical malpractice is two years from the date that you discover or should have reasonably discovered that your baby suffered an injury due to malpractice. In any case, a medical malpractice claim cannot be filed more than seven years after the allegedly negligent medical treatment occurred. Alternatively, if your child decides to file a medical malpractice lawsuit on his or her own behalf, he or she has until age 20 to file a lawsuit.
There are many costs that can be involved in filing a birth injury lawsuit, from the court fees to the fees to hire medical experts for your case, to the attorney fees. However, depending on the circumstances of your case, it may be possible for a medical malpractice attorney to take your case on “contingency”. This means that you do not have to pay any of the costs of your lawsuit unless and until the attorney obtains a monetary recovery for you and your family; the attorney will typically take an agreed-upon percentage of the recovery you receive to cover the costs of the lawsuit.
It can be difficult to estimate how long a claim for compensation for birth injuries will take. The length of time that a case will take depends on numerous factors, including the complexity of the facts in your case, whether the responsible medical professionals accept liability for your injuries, whether there is any dispute over the amount of damages that you and your family have suffered, and whether you or your baby have ongoing treatment. While some cases can be settled in as little as a few months, if it becomes necessary to file a lawsuit in your case and to take your claim to trial, your case can take several years to resolve.
Birth injuries can be the result of medical malpractice if the injuries are caused by a treating medical professional’s failure to adhere to the applicable standards of care in your case.
If our medical malpractice attorneys file a lawsuit on your behalf in your birth injury case, you can expect that we will continue to negotiate a full and fair settlement of your claim. The reality is that most cases do not go to trial
As a practical matter, if a child suffers a birth injury during delivery, the child’s parents will accept any recovery from a birth injury claim on behalf of their child, although the damages can be thought of as “belonging” to the injured child. Parents may be able to recover their own direct damages from a birth injury claim, such as birth injuries suffered by the mother during delivery or the parents’ loss of their child’s society and companionship due to birth injuries.
You, your baby, and your family may be entitled to various forms of compensation. At a minimum, you can expect to recover the medical expenses that you incurred to treat the birth injury. If you, the mother, suffered a birth injury during delivery, you may also be entitled to recover lost wages if you miss work during your recovery. You and your baby may also be entitled to recover damages for pain and suffering and loss of quality of life caused by the birth injury.