The birth of a child is generally one of the happiest moments of a person’s life. However, when things go wrong, such a momentous occasion can quickly spiral into trying circumstances that the family will be forced to endure, sometimes for years and decades to come. Delivery room doctors, nurses, and other caregivers are entrusted by the public to treat and care for our loved ones and to provide a high level of professional service, but when they make mistakes or if they act negligently, it is the newly born infant, the mother, and the family that will have to suffer injuries that are sometimes severe and life-altering. Medical negligence and malpractice, in extreme cases, can even lead to death.
If your child suffered a serious birth-related injury such as Erb’s palsy, we can help you. Contact us today for a free and private case evaluation by calling (800) 222-9529. Our team of experienced birth injury lawyers can help you understand your legal options, including your right to seek damages and compensation. Birth injuries not only alter the course of the affected individual’s life, but they typically result in mounting medical bills, emotional stress, and isolation from the community. Call today to learn how to cope with and handle such circumstances. We provide free case evaluations and private consultations at no upfront cost.
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What Is Erb’s Palsy?
Erb’s palsy, also known as a brachial plexus injury or shoulder paralysis, is a common birth injury that occurs when a baby’s shoulder becomes stuck against the mother’s pelvic bone or inside the birth canal during delivery. It can result in permanent nerve damage that limits the child’s ability to use one arm or the other. It can last a lifetime and affects different children in different ways.
Erb’s palsy is a preventable condition if a reasonable level of medical care is used during the baby’s delivery. If a medical care provider fails to recognize specific signs of problem, does not take remedial steps on time, does not take preemptive steps to minimize the risks of an injury, or incorrectly uses delivery tools or conducts actions that cause or exacerbate an unexpected birth-related complication, a child can be left with life-long Erb’s palsy.
We specialize in helping patients and families overcome the personal, financial, and legal challenges they face in the aftermath of an Erb’s palsy diagnosis. If your child or that of a loved one suffers from Erb’s palsy, we are here to help. Call us at (800) 222-9529 for a consultation and a free, no-obligation case evaluation to determine the best course of action for you to secure the physical well-being of your child and the financial well-being of your family.
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Treating Erb’s Palsy
The treatment and management of Erb’s palsy will depend upon its severity. Some cases will require surgical intervention; others are manageable with physiotherapy and other non-invasive techniques. The usual treatments include immobilization, along with passive and active exercises. Some of the most common and effective treatments for Erb’s palsy include the following.
This is a form of physical therapy that uses an anti-gravity environment to minimize the stress on the skeleton and the muscles. This allows the patient (often a neonate, or a newly-born child less than four weeks old) to move with less pain while at the same time strengthening his or her muscles and reducing the occurrence of spasms.
Physiotherapy is usually performed either alone or in combination with hydrotherapy. The response to therapy will vary from patient to patient; some will heal earlier than others, and some will require longer or more strenuous physiotherapy sessions. Physiotherapy may also be required in severe cases that require surgery, or for milder cases that simply need some additional help to strengthen and heal affected areas on their own. Physiotherapy exercises include strength exercises, range of motion exercises, gentle stretching exercises, and sensory stimulation.
This is usually required after surgery and is required by patients who sustained long-term nerve damage. It is designed to help the patient perform everyday activities such as eating, tying his or her shoes, playing, grasping objects, writing, drawing, and more.
Surgical interventions are the last resort for Erb’s palsy patients and it is usually only performed when there is no functional recovery from the use of the other techniques outlined above. Surgical interventions include nerve grafts and nerve decompression operations. Nerve graft operations have the highest rates of success when it comes to removing disabilities and improving motor functions and independence in patients affected by Erb’s palsy.
Legal Settlements Involving Erb’s Palsy
If you suspect that your child suffered birth-related injuries caused by medical negligence or malpractice, we will help you review your case. This will involve investigating the circumstances surrounding your child’s birth in order to determine whether or not you may be entitled to compensation.
Some of the costs related to Erb’s palsy that may be compensable include:
- Medical care costs: These include the costs of medicine, diagnostic tests, hospital visits, and surgery, if needed.
- Assistive devices such as arm braces or splints.
- Physical therapy (to overcome weakness and a loss of motor function in the arm), occupational therapy (to improve the ability to perform fine motor actions), and social/emotional therapy (to help the patient overcome the stigma and trauma caused by isolation.
- Lost income from an inability to work due to time spent at home caring for your child.
- Pain and suffering damages to compensate you for damages that you should not have faced in the first place.
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How We Help
Every child who suffers from Erb’s palsy lives differently with it. One child may require lifelong intensive care while another may not exhibit serious symptoms or side effects until preschool.
Treatments for Erb’s palsy can be very expensive, and the financial burden of paying for therapy and treatments can become overwhelming. Even if you are not sure whether or not your child’s condition was caused by medical malpractice or if negligence contributed to your child’s condition, we are here to help. We will thoroughly investigate your medical records at no cost, discuss your legal options with you, explain your rights to you, and chart out a plan for you to seek the damages you may be entitled to. Call us today at (800) 222-9529.