Fetal distress can be avoided during pregnancy. Doctors can administer tocolysis to avoid fetal distress in the second stage of labor. Tocolysis can stop or slow contractions, promoting fetal oxygenation. When your baby receives more oxygen, there is less of a chance of fetal distress.
For a free legal consultation, call 1-800-222-9529
Monitoring Your Infant’s Heartbeat
The typical first sign of fetal distress is an abnormal heart rate. Throughout your pregnancy and during your labor, doctors will monitor your unborn baby’s heartbeat to be sure he is coping with the stresses of labor well. Any abnormality they notice during fetal heart monitoring can alert them to potential concerns. When your baby’s heartbeat varies from the norm, doctors will look for the cause. Potential causes could be as simple as your unborn child’s response to contractions, other internal changes, or as complex a disruption in their supply of oxygen.
Fetal heart monitoring can be non-invasive and involve a member of your medical team observing your baby’s heartbeat with a device called a Doppler, right through your belly. A Doppler is often used during your prenatal visits and during labor to measure your baby’s heart rate. The doppler is secured to your belly and sends the sounds of your baby’s heart to a computer where it is displayed on a screen and printed on paper.
Fetal heart monitoring can also be conducted internally using a thin wire called an electrode which is placed on your baby’s scalp. The electrode extends from your baby’s scalp, through your cervix, and is connected to a monitor. Internal fetal heart monitoring provides better readings because it is not affected by factors like your baby’s movements. Fetal heart monitoring can only be done internally if your water has broken and your cervix is open. It sometimes becomes an option when external monitoring fails to produce a good reading.
Birth Injury Lawyer Near Me 1-800-222-9529
Understanding the Stages of Labor
Labor occurs in three primary stages:
- The first stage of labor consists of contractions that cause your cervix to open, allowing your baby to pass through.
- The second stage of labor lasts from the complete dilation of your cervix to the delivery of your baby. During the second stage of labor, you will push, and your baby will be delivered. It is during this time that fetal distress can occur as your baby could be under stress.
- The third stage of labor is usually the shortest stage lasting up to thirty minutes. It encompasses the completion of the delivery of your baby and the delivery of your placenta.
Soon after you are admitted to the hospital, your doctor will listen to your baby’s heartbeat to determine if his heart rate is normal or if he or she might be in distress.
Consult a Birth Injury Lawyer
Did you or your child suffer from complications of fetal distress? If you believe fetal distress could have been avoided or mitigated during your pregnancy, an attorney may be able to help you get to the truth.
When a case of fetal distress puts your child at risk of a birth injury, you deserve to have an advocate on your side. Knowing that fetal distress can be avoided during a pregnancy when a medical professional properly diagnoses and treats it, we encourage you call the Birth Injury Lawyers Group today at (800) 222-9529.