A forceful delivery caused severe and permanent injuries in our 5-year-old client. The mother of this young girl retained our law firm to represent her daughter for personal injuries she suffered at birth because the delivering doctor did not use the appropriate techniques and accepted birthing maneuvers when this baby’s arm became stuck behind the pubic bone. This impaction prevented the baby from delivering naturally.
This medical condition is called Shoulder Dystocia, and it is a medical emergency. Physicians are trained to identify a Shoulder Dystocia and are further trained to use the appropriate maneuvers to safely deliver a baby. The maneuvers are used to safely dislodge the impacted arm behind the pubic bone, without stretching the nerves in the neck. When too much force is used, a stretching or tearing of the nerves in the neck can result in the neurological condition known as Erb’s Palsy.
Her mother claimed that the doctor’s hands were on the baby’s head after the shoulder was identified as stuck. Her mother further claimed that the doctor was forcefully pulling and twisting several times. Eventually, her daughter was delivered but unfortunately with a limp and non-moving right arm.
As a result of the forces and traction exerted on the infant’s brachial plexus nerve complex at the time of delivery, the baby suffered Erb’s Palsy of her right arm, with resulting severe and permanent injuries, damages, deficits, and functional limitations.
Years of physical and occupational therapy allowed this child to regain some use and function of her affected arm. Notwithstanding the strides and accomplishments achieved, this young girl continues to have visible deformities and limitations of the arm. The injured arm is 2 inches shorter than the other arm. She suffers from downward slopping of the shoulder, scapula winging and contracture at the elbow and shoulder. In addition, she may require surgery to address her orthopedic impairments.
Just days prior to trial, this matter was settled in the sum of $1,000,000.00.