Birth Injury Lawyers in Harrisburg, PA
Caring advocacy when medical malpractice causes your newborn harm
The dream of every parent is that their child will be born healthy. Parents want their children to live full, productive, and joyful lives. However, those dreams can be shattered in an instant when a mother and father learn that something went wrong during the delivery process. A diagnosis of cerebral palsy, kernicterus, hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy (HIE), or any other birth disorders is devastating.
At KBG Injury Law, our Harrisburg birth injury lawyers understand what to do when medical malpractice happens during a pregnancy, during the delivery, and after the baby is born. We work with birth injury experts who understand what steps the negligent health providers failed to take and how your child’s injuries could have been prevented. We file claims against the hospitals, obstetricians, medical practices, nurses, midwives, and others who failed to protect your newborn. We fight to ensure you and your child secure full compensation for what he or she needs to thrive for a lifetime.
What are common types of birth injuries?
Many birth injuries affect the brain or the nervous system. Brain injuries are often due to a lack of oxygen or bleeding. Brain injuries and nervous system disorders can cause disfigurement, cognitive difficulties, physical pain, immobility, paralysis, and even death. Mothers may suffer preeclampsia, blood loss, a ruptured uterus, infections, and other disorders and complications.
Some of the many types of birth injuries our seasoned Harrisburg medical malpractice lawyers handle include:
- Cerebral palsy. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, cerebral palsy (CP) affects a newborn’s movement, balance, and posture. “CP is caused by abnormal brain development or damage to the developing brain that affects a person’s ability to control his or her muscles.” If your child has severe CP, he/she may be unable to walk or may need assistive equipment. Children with CP may have many problems that require a lifetime of care including “intellectual disability; seizures; problems with vision, hearing, or speech; changes in the spine (such as scoliosis); or joint problems (such as contractures).”
- Brachial plexus injury. This birth injury occurs when the brachial plexus nerves are damaged. These nerves lie between the newborn’s shoulders and head. The network of nerves manages muscle function of the shoulders, arms, hands, and chest. During delivery, the nerves may be stretched, compressed, or torn. Erb’s palsy is a type of brachial plexus injury that can cause shoulder weakness and a loss of motion. Erb’s palsy injuries often occur if force is required to dislodge the baby. Another type of brachial plexus injury is called Klumpke’s palsy, causing paralysis of the arm. Complications include tearing of the nerves.
- Hypoxic-ischemic Encephalopathy (HIE). Hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy (HIE) is a type of newborn brain damage caused by oxygen deprivation and limited blood flow. HIE is also called birth asphyxia, perinatal asphyxia, and neonatal encephalopathy. The HIE Help Center notes, “Once there is permanent brain damage, there is no cure for HIE. However, there are many treatments and therapies that can improve symptoms and function in children with HIE.”
- Shoulder dystocia. This birth injury may be due to the baby becoming stuck during delivery, the size of the mother’s pelvis, the baby is late, gestational diabetes, or other reasons. Shoulder dystocia can cause brain damage and other injuries.
Other types of birth injuries include facial paralysis, cortical blindness, cephalohematoma, and intracranial hemorrhage.
Some of the many complications that birth doctors need to recognize include placental abruption – which can happen when the mother’s placenta prematurely detaches from the mother’s uterus – and uterine rupture.
What are some reasons why Harrisburg birth injuries occur?
At KBG Injury Law, our Harrisburg lawyers work with a network of doctors experienced with the steps health professionals should take to anticipate, monitor, and respond to pregnancy difficulties and emergencies during the delivery. Some common reasons why medical malpractice causes birth injuries happen include:
- Not anticipating birth delivery complications.
- Improper diagnosis of a problem when it does occur.
- Not responding to a complication properly.
- Failure to continually monitor the mother and baby, especially the baby’s oxygen levels.
- Failure to treat infections.
- Improper use of forceps, vacuum extractors, and other birth tools.
- Delaying or not performing a Cesarean when necessary.
The HIE Help Center provides a few reasons why medical malpractice may cause HIE.
- Failure to properly manage a high-risk pregnancy, such as a mother who has preeclampsia or gestational diabetes.
- Umbilical cord complications, like compression of the umbilical cord.
- Uterine or placental complications. The uterus and placenta provide blood for the baby. Complications include placental abruption, placenta previa, placental insufficiency, and uterine rupture.
- Allowing infections to spread from the mother to the baby.
- Failure to properly monitor the baby’s heart.
- Failure to prevent a premature birth.
- Allowing a labor to continue too long.
- Medication problems.
- Failure to properly manage a newborn’s condition.
Who is liable for my child’s birth injuries?
Our Harrisburg birth injury lawyers file personal injury claims when your newborn suffers a birth injury due to medical malpractice. We also file wrongful death claims if your baby tragically dies during childbirth.
The defendants who may be liable for hurting your child include:
- Birth delivery doctors
- Birth delivery nurses
- Medical technicians
- Other healthcare providers
What damages can you seek in a Harrisburg birth injury case?
Doctors, hospitals, and healthcare providers will fight hard to deny liability. You need lawyers on your side who are skilled, persistent, and persuasive. You need lawyers who aren’t afraid of the big insurance companies and challenging the reputation of Harrisburg physicians.
No amount of money can truly compensate for any permanent or catastrophic birth injury. At KBG Injury Law, we fight to obtain the strongest, most just settlement or verdict possible. The value of your child’s injury claim is based on many factors, including:
- All medical bills. Newborns with catastrophic or permanent injuries often require daily lifetime care. Liable healthcare professionals should pay for all necessary surgeries, doctor visits, physical therapy, cognitive therapy, psychological therapy, assistive devices, and medications.
- Pain and suffering. Children born with cerebral palsy, a brachial plexus injury, or any other medical disorder live with a lifetime of pain, aches, loss of bodily function, cognitive impairments, anxiety, and depression. They deserve compensation for their pain.
- Scarring and disfigurements. Children who have a visible injury need extra help coping with their self-esteem and adjusting to how others see them.
In some cases of medical malpractice, we demand punitive damages.
Normally, parents file the medical malpractice claim on behalf of their child. The settlements and verdicts are usually paid through a structured agreement to ensure medical and other related bills are paid throughout the child’s lifetime. We also handle birth injury claims on a contingency fee basis, meaning you don’t pay until we win your case.
Is there a birth injury attorney near me?
Our Harrisburg office is conveniently located on the West Shore at 717 Market Street, Lemoyne, PA. We’re a few blocks from the West Shore Farmers Market and a short distance from downtown Harrisburg. We also offer four other locations throughout South Central PA.
Get help from an experienced Harrisburg birth injury lawyer now
Experience matters. Results matter. At KBG Injury Law, we’ve been fighting for personal injury victims, including newborns and children, for 40 years. Ask us about our track record of strong settlements and verdicts. We’ll fight to help your newborn have the best life possible. To discuss your newborn’s rights, call us at 717-848-3838 or fill out our contact form to schedule an appointment. KBG Injury Law maintains offices in Harrisburg, York, Lancaster, Hanover, and Gettysburg.