When your dream of giving birth to your newborn results in an injury to you or your baby, you could be left physically and emotionally devastated. Epidural birth injuries can have severe medical complications that lead to undue suffering on the part of you and your baby.
You have a right to receive compensation for existing and ongoing medical problems and costs associated with the use of an epidural during your infant’s delivery. Call the Birth Injury Lawyers Group at 1-800-222-9529 to speak to an attorney who can help you recover damages for the injuries you or your baby suffered due to an epidural.
For a free legal consultation, call 1-800-222-9529
Epidural Injuries Lawsuits & Injury Cases
Filing a medical malpractice claim due to a birth injury can help you recover the cost of current and future medical bills associated with your injury.
To file a successful claim, you need to be prepared to prove your anesthesiologist or another member of your medical team was negligent or that the equipment or medications used in your treatment were faulty. Specifically, you must prove they failed to uphold the standard of care, which is the level of care another professional in the same field would have offered.
An attorney can prove you have recoverable economic damages like loss of income and the cost of existing and ongoing medical care. The damages you might be entitled to recover also include noneconomic damages like pain and suffering.
Filing a claim for epidural birth injuries can be challenging on your own. Our attorneys will help you understand who to hold liable for your injuries, meet the guidelines for your state, and file your claim within the specified statute of limitations. Call the Birth Injury Lawyers Group at 1-800-222-9529 for a no-cost, no-obligation consultation today.
Epidural Injury Lawyer Near Me 1-800-222-9529
Epidural Injury Types
If you or your baby suffer from the debilitating symptoms of an incorrectly administered or improperly managed epidural, it may result in a diagnosis of one of these types of epidural birth injuries.
- Nerve damage
- The onset of seizures
- Unrelenting back pain
- Spinal cord injuries
- A sudden drop in blood pressure
Because epidurals can prolong labor, the baby can suffer injuries associated with longer labor (e.g., vacuum extraction or forceps injuries).
Epidural Injury Causes
Epidural birth injuries can have many causes including human error on the part of your health care team, an allergic reaction to the epidural, or the use of too much medication in the epidural. An epidural birth injury might also be caused by the injection of medication at the wrong site or a failure to properly monitor the patient for signs of maternal or fetal distress.
Epidural Injury Symptoms
The symptoms you experience in the aftermath of an epidural might include a sudden drop in your blood pressure, headache, fever and other symptoms.
The baby might suffer scalp scratches, brain damage, skull fracture, bleeding in the skull, and seizures.
Epidural Injuries Diagnosis and Treatment
Epidural birth injuries to you or your baby can present themselves in a range of ways. Their diagnoses and treatments will vary according to their severity. If your child has a low Apgar score or has difficulty breathing due to a birth injury, they will be placed in the NICU (neonatal intensive care unit) for diagnoses and treatment.
As the mother, the symptoms you display can lead your doctor to make a diagnosis of epidural-related injuries. They may prescribe treatments and medications that confirm your diagnosis and give you short- and long-term relief.
Epidural Injuries Frequently Asked Questions
How Do I Know If My Baby Has An Epidural Injury?
If you or your baby suffer from epidural birth injuries, you may experience one or more of these symptoms. You might suffer from severe headaches, a sudden drop in blood pressure, fever, and chills. Your baby might experience many injuries related to a prolonged birth.
Are Epidural Injuries Fatal?
An epidural can pose many long-term and short-term risks. Those risks range from hypertension and severe nausea to nerve damage and paralysis. In some cases, an epidural can lead to respiratory problems, seizures, and difficulty breathing. In rare cases, an epidural can result in death.
Who Is Liable For Epidural Injuries?
If you or your newborn were injured due to an epidural, you might be able to seek compensation for your injuries from the anesthesiologist who administered the epidural. In addition to the anesthesiologist, there may be other medical and health care professionals who played a role in the outcome.
If you or your baby suffered from epidural birth injuries, our birth injury lawyers can help you determine who is liable for your injuries and what your next steps should be.
What Is The Statute of Limitations For Epidural Injuries?
A lawsuit for birth injuries and medical malpractice must be filed within a specified time from the date of the injury. This time limit, called the statute of limitations, differs from state to state. Some states limit this timeline to only one year while others allow a much longer timeframe.
When a lawsuit involves injury or damages to a minor, the statute of limitations tolls (i.e., pauses) until the child reaches their majority. At that point, the clock restarts.
Along with the statute of limitations, the statute of repose (i.e., absolute deadline) also creates limitations on your birth injury lawsuit. If you fail to abide by this time limit, it could put your claim at risk. Call 1-800-222-9529 to speak to the attorneys at the Birth Injury Lawyers Group. We can help ensure you meet the guidelines and filing requirements for your state.
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Epidural Injury Glossary Terms
- What are Spinal Membrane Injuries?
The spinal membrane covers and protects your brain and spinal cord. When the spinal membranes are injured, it can cause numbness, weakness, loss of bowel or bladder control, or paralysis.
- What is Hypertension?
Hypertension is defined as high blood pressure. High blood pressure results when the pressure in your arteries is higher than normal. Hypertension could cause heart attack and stroke.
- What are Seizures?
Seizures are characterized by uncontrolled electrical activity in the brain that results in convulsions. Untreated seizures can be caused by head injuries, brain tumors, fevers, and birth injuries.
Find An Epidural Injury Attorney Near Me
If your birth experience ended with injuries to you or your child due to the administration of an epidural, call us today. Our team can help you understand your legal options for recovery and relief, and help you receive compensation for the injuries you sustained. Call 1-800-222-9529 to speak to the attorneys at the Birth Injury Lawyers Group. Our consultation is free, and we do not collect a fee unless you reach a settlement.
Epidural Injury News
Doctors Need To Listen To Women About Epidural Needs
The decision to get an epidural or not is a complicated one. They are meant to block much of the pain of labor by numbing the nerves of the spine. Some women desire to have as natural a birth as possible. Others worry about the complications of anesthesia or wonder if the block will cause harm to the baby.
It’s worse when doctors ignore women’s concerns about their labor care. It can lead to a type of PTSD, as three women report in She Knows.com. The first woman planned not to get an epidural but then got one when the pain became too intense. The doctors gave her too high of a dose. When her blood pressure spiked later, the doctors blamed it on anxiety several times. However, she had a uterine infection and postpartum preeclampsia, which can be fatal. She developed PTSD due to the trauma of being ignored.
The second woman had pre-existing OCD and symphysis pubis dysfunction, which can cause pain in the pelvis. She wanted to only use nitrous oxide, but the pain was too intense. When she finally broke down enough to ask for pain relief, and could ask for it through the pain, she was told it was too late and the baby was coming. However, they had to do an emergency C-section to get the baby out. The trauma of the experience left a lasting mark.
The last woman, who is a little person, insisted that her doctors look at her MRIs because the spines of little people are more complicated than those of normal humans. The anesthesiologist refused to look at them, then ignored her requests for more pain medication. Thankfully, the OBGYN made him listen. But then the anesthesiologist made a callous remark about sterilizing her while she was open during her C-section.
We hope that the women in these cases, and other women in similar cases, can get compensation for what happened. Ignoring a woman’s self-reporting of symptoms opens doctors up to malpractice claims, especially if it leads to later complications.
Study Shows That Epidurals Increase Chances Of NICU Admission
One of the questions that may come up for women about to give birth is whether or not they should have an epidural. When done correctly, they do make labor much less painful but there can be worries about how it affects the baby.
A new study published in the International Journal of Women’s Health shows that epidurals may not be as safe for babies as once thought. The study wanted to see if an epidural increased the risk of admitting a baby to an NICU, along with several other risks in the first 24 hours of life.
The study looked at 2360 low-risk babies from mothers who had never given birth before. It found that admission rates were significantly higher in women who had an epidural. Babies were more likely to have respiratory distress, birth injuries, higher temperatures, a higher need for oxygen, and need antibiotics.
Mothers who had epidurals also had lengthier labor, higher temperatures, and an increased need for instruments to deliver the baby, which carries risks all of its own.
As we are not doctors, we can’t go so far as to say that an epidural is dangerous. But this new study should give doctors and mothers pause. More research needs to be done to see if an epidural causes more harm than good.
A new study may point to a new way of treating labor pain in women that would avoid the use of epidural, though the research is still preliminary. Virtual reality was shown to be effective in reducing labor pains. Medpage Today reports.
Forty women were recruited for the study, which was an unblinded randomized clinical trial. Half of the women used a labor-specific VR session for 30 minutes. that gave the women relaxing visuals and messages. The other group received no intervention. No pain medication was allowed for either group and the VR group was cleared for side effects related to VR use before participating.
The VR group experienced a reduction in pain while the control group experienced an increase. The heart rate of the control group was also about 10 points higher than the VR group. After the testing session was complete, most of the women still opted for an epidural for the remainder of labor.
Researchers are unsure whether it was the VR itself that caused the pain reduction or the fact that it was a distraction. More research is needed. Finding ways to reduce labor pains without medication could lead to less medicine used and better outcomes for babies, who can be harmed from epidurals.