Many parents place tremendous faith in hospitals and medical professionals to help deliver happy and healthy newborn children. Unfortunately, one oversight or mistake can cause a devastating injury that may have lifelong or even fatal consequences.
These types of injuries not only have an immeasurable emotional toll for parents, but they can also result in staggering financial costs. The parent of any child who sustained injuries during the delivery process can be entitled to compensation for the negligence of doctors, physicians, or other medical staff.
Atlanta Birth Injuries Lawyer
If your child suffered serious injuries or died because of negligent care, it is important that you contact an experienced medical malpractice attorney as soon as possible. ReShea Balams understands the challenged involved in these complicated cases, but she is committed to fighting to get justice for the families she represents.
The Balams Firm serves Atlanta residents as well as people in Gwinnett County, Fulton County, DeKalb County, Cobb County, and Clayton County. You can discuss your case with our firm when you call (404) 445-2005 to schedule a free consultation.
Georgia Birth Injuries Information Center
- What types of errors occur during prenatal care?
- How can neonatal care result in these kinds of injuries?
- What kinds of mistakes can result in cerebral palsy?
- Which errors during an epidural might cause these types of injuries?
- What is involved in a wrongful birth claim?
- Where can I learn more about this subject?
During her pregnancy, a mother will undergo a series of regular check-ups and tests that allow for doctors to screen for possible birth defects, correct certain problems, and identify any issues that may create a high-risk delivery. Competent prenatal care will often identify low birth weight, heart defects, or other fetal malformation as well as high blood pressure, excessive water retention, or abnormal weight loss or gain in the mother.
Any errors during this stage can have serious consequences for the mother and the child. Misdiagnosis, delayed diagnosis, or failure to diagnose certain conditions can result in devastating complications.
Some examples of negligence that may occur during prenatal care include failure to do any of the following:
- Conduct regular fetal ultrasounds
- Identify birth defects
- Properly diagnose a medical condition of the mother or a disease that could be contagious to her
- Properly diagnose placental abruption
- Recognize amniotic fluid problems
- Treat maternal hypertension (high blood pressure)
- Treat gestational diabetes
- Treat preeclampsia
Also known as neonatal or postpartum care, the postnatal period is extremely important because in addition to monitoring the mother’s physical and psychological health, there is also a newborn child who is adjusting to life outside the uterus. The baby will not only undergo routine medical procedures, but he or she may require an increased level of care in emergency situations.
If a hospital is not properly staffed in these situations, a child can suffer catastrophic or even fatal injuries because of the inaction or negligence of medical staff. Some examples of postnatal care negligence include:
- Charting, documentation, or labeling errors resulting in improper treatment because of misidentification
- Drug or medication errors
- Failure to diagnose and treat metabolic issues such as jaundice, kernicterus, or hyperbilirubinemia
- Failure to monitor child’s condition
- Failure to prevent or treat infection
- Failure to provide respiratory support
- Improper resuscitation
- Vaccine errors
- Ventilator errors
Cerebral palsy is a group of movement disorders that are frequently caused by an injury to a developing brain. It typically affects a child’s motor skills, movements, and muscle coordination for the remainder of his or her life.
In some cases, cerebral palsy may be the result of random mutations that control brain development, but there are several other cases in which this condition is the result of preventable medical errors. Some of these mistakes may include:
- Dangerously low blood sugar levels
- Failure to monitor for signs of fetal distress
- Hypoxia, or oxygen deprivation during labor possibly caused by obstructed delivery
- Infant or maternal infections during pregnancy
- Medication or anesthesia errors
- Misdiagnosis or delayed diagnosis
- Surgical errors
- Untreated meningitis or metabolic issues like high bilirubin levels
Many mothers use epidurals as a form of pain relief while they are in labor. During this process, painkilling drugs are passed through nerve fibers near the mother’s spinal cord, creating a loss of sensation in the lower half of her body while still allowing her to remain fully conscious.
An epidural is a form of anesthesia, and dosage errors or failure to monitor can result in severe or possibly fatal injuries to the mother and/or the child. A mother may suffer nerve damage, cardiac arrest, or paralysis. A child may sustain a brain injury, contract a heart or respiratory disease, or go into fetal stroke.
Some possible mistakes made during the epidural process may include, but are not limited to:
- Too much medication
- Too many injections
- Injections directly into spine or wrong area
- Using medication the mother is allergic to
- Failure to monitor maternal and/or fetal distress
When a doctor fails to properly diagnose a potentially serious problem with an unborn fetus or otherwise deprives parents of the opportunity to make an informed decision about the risks associated with giving birth to a child who has serious genetic abnormalities, the parents may be able to bring a wrongful birth claim. These types of medical malpractice cases typically involve children who will either spend their entire lives in tremendous pain or die either shortly after being born or at very young ages.
Some of the most common conditions and diseases that are grounds for wrongful birth claims include:
- Cystic Fibrosis
- Down Syndrome (Trisomy 21)
- Edwards Syndrome (Trisomy 18)
- Fragile X Syndrome
- Holoprosencephaly (HPE)
- Myotubular Myopathy
- Patau Syndrome (Trisomy 13)
- Sickle Cell Anemia
- Spina Bifida
- Tay-Sachs Disease
- Thalassemia Major
March of Dimes — This website contains information for before you become pregnant, during your pregnancy, and after giving birth. You can also learn about your baby’s health, complications, and preparing and caring for your baby.
1776 Peachtree Street
Atlanta, GA, 30309
United Cerebral Palsy of Georgia — You can find information upcoming events and links to resources on this website. There is also information about various programs, including community living supports, in home support, adult day supports, children’s services, and supportive services.
3300 Northeast Expressway
Atlanta, GA 30341
(888) UCP-WILL / (770) 676-2000
Fragile Kids Foundation — This nonprofit organization provides various forms of support for medically fragile children in Georgia. Fragile Kids provides medically necessary equipment that is not covered by private or government sponsored insurance.
3350 Riverwood Parkway
Atlanta, Georgia 30339
Finding the Best Birth Injuries Lawyer in the Atlanta Area
Parents of children who have sustained birth injuries may carry the burden of medical expenses for the remainder of their lives, and many other parents live with tremendous emotional pain when babies die prematurely because of errors by doctors or hospital staff. Victims of this type of medical malpractice can be entitled to financial compensation, and ReShea Balams helps clients all over the greater Atlanta area hold negligent medical professional accountable.
The Balams Firm represents clients in and around Atlanta, including such communities as Smyrna, Sandy Springs, Roswell, Riverdale, Norcross, Milton, Marietta, Lawrenceville, Johns Creek, Forest Park, East Point, Dunwoody, Duluth, Decatur, College Park, and Alpharetta. Call (404) 445-2005 right now to take advantage of a free consultation that will let our firm review your case and help you understand your legal options.