An umbilical cord strangulation is a rare event, but it can cause all kinds of complications. It can even kill the child as they are born. Surprisingly, it doesn’t have to wrap around the neck to kill a baby. If it wraps around a limb, it can still cut off enough pressure to keep the baby from getting oxygen.
A couple in New Zealand recounted their story where this happened to their child on the Noted website. An ultrasound revealed to the Pitocks that their baby had strangulated itself before it was born. The child was dead before birth.
The mother chose to deliver the baby naturally. After labor, the doctors said that the cord had wrapped twice around the baby’s ankle. After both parents held the baby for some time, the hospital took care of the body.
But the trauma didn’t stop there. The mother’s body kept producing milk expecting the child. The cruelty of hospital billing hit the family with expenses. People who knew of the pregnancy kept calling to ask about the baby.
It took several years to process the grief with the help of a support group, but as the father in the story says, the pain never really goes away.
If you have experienced the loss of a child due to a birth injury, don’t just seek financial compensation. You may need the help and support of others to deal with the mental trauma of the event. Please consider finding a support group or counselor who specializes in these issues.