Erb’s palsy is a neurological disorder that affects an individual’s ability to move the shoulder, arm, hands, fingers, or wrists. It is caused by damage to the brachial plexus, which is a system of nerves in the neck. In addition to sensory and movement issues, Erb’s palsy can lead to emotional trauma, a lack of independence, and high treatment and therapy costs. You can usually identify Erb’s palsy if a child misses certain growth milestones or has trouble using their arms or hands.
If your child exhibits any of these symptoms or received a diagnosis of Erb’s palsy, you may want to speak with a lawyer to investigate the case. In order to effectively treat the disorder and pursue any damages that you may be entitled to receive, you must first determine the cause, nature, and extent of your child’s injuries. Call the Birth Injury Lawyers Group at (800) 222-9529 for a free case evaluation. For families in Elizabeth, we handle all aspects of medical negligence suits on the family’s behalf if their case warrants a claim.
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Causes and Risk Factors of Brachial Plexus Injuries and Erb’s Palsy
Brachial plexus injuries leading to Erb’s palsy can occur in many ways. They are especially common during childbirth and are often seen in the following situations:
- If a baby’s head or neck are pulled, pushed, or stretched forcefully to one side or the other as the baby makes its way through the birth canal.
- If a child is too large or the mother does not sufficiently dilate to allow the baby to pass through, the baby’s head may emerge while the shoulders are stuck behind, usually against the mother’s pelvis.
- Breech births in which the baby is delivered feet first or bottom first can cause the baby’s arms to be raised or twisted awkwardly inside the birth canal, leading to different types of nerve damage.
In many of these cases, the injuries in question can be categorized as preventable, especially if the delivery team could have—or should have—tested for or identified issues that arose during a complicated birth. If so, you may be entitled to compensatory damages for the financial losses that arise from your child’s injury.
Before doing this, however, an understanding of the risk factors of Erb’s palsy is required. Risk factors increase the likelihood of sustaining an injury and developing an illness.
The risk factors of Erb’s palsy may include any of the following:
- Large infants that may become stuck in the birth canal
- Doctor inexperience
Clerical and administrative errors, such as the administration of incorrect dosages of medications, can also lead to birth injuries, as can the incorrect use of assistive devices to deliver a baby in a complicated or emergency birth. Both factors correlate positively with birth injuries. Extraction devices are known to cause physical damage and trauma in newborn children, especially when used incorrectly.
Health care providers are expected to take all of the necessary steps that are needed to prevent the mother and her baby from sustaining injuries during the mother’s pregnancy, during the birth of the child, and soon after delivery. If your child sustained a birth injury or exhibits some of the signs and symptoms of Erb’s palsy, call the Birth Injury Lawyers Group at (800) 222-9529 for help investigating the circumstances surrounding your child’s delivery.
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Erb’s Palsy Treatments and Compensation Categories
Treatment for serious cases of Erb’s palsy includes surgery. Mild and moderate cases often improve with the use of physical or occupational therapy. Long term care and treatments of other types may also be used depending on the nature of the patient’s brachial plexus damage since some patients may suffer immobility, permanent weakness, or even paralysis in the affected arm.
If the actions—or the detrimental inaction—of your child’s doctor or delivery team caused, contributed to, or aggravated damage to your child’s brachial plexus, and he or she developed Erb’s palsy as a result, this may give you the grounds you need to sue for medical negligence. The same applies to birth injuries of other types.
Treatment, therapy, and rehabilitation can be very costly. If the medical caregivers whom we trust to provide our loved ones with the care and treatment they need and deserve fall short of providing those services up to a medically acceptable standard, they may be held liable for the bodily injuries and financial damages that arise as a result. Recovering these damages is what we aim to help you with achieving.
Compensation payouts in Erb’s palsy cases often include one or more of the following:
- The costs of rehabilitation, therapy, counseling, and training
- Medical costs, such as doctor visits, medication, tests, surgical procedures, and assistive devices
- The costs of making home improvements to make the home patient accessible
- Lost income
These costs can quickly add up. Since it can take months for a medical malpractice claim to make its way from filing all the way to a final decision, speak with an attorney to evaluate your case and get a claim for damages underway.
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We offer services on a contingency-fee-basis. We charge no upfront attorneys’ fees and only collect once you have received a court award or negotiated settlement. You have nothing to lose, so call today for a free case evaluation. We will tell you about the strengths and weaknesses of your case, the liable parties involved, your recoverable damages, how and when to file, and our strategy if your case goes to trial.
The Birth Injury Lawyers Group is here to help you get your life back on track. Statutes of limitation apply to all injury and malpractice cases, so be sure to file a claim as soon as you discover or receive a diagnosis of Erb’s palsy. Call today at (800) 222-9529.
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