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Erb’s Palsy: Another Birth Injury Caused by Medical Malpractice

Medical malpractice lawsuits against doctors, medical staff and even hospitals has become a growing concern in many US states for the past decade. Despite the standard quality of care that medical health providers are required to provide all patients with, many of them have fallen into the erroneous practice of reducing medical care to a pay-for-service doctor and patient relationship.

Medical malpractice not only worsens a patient’s current health complaints, it can also result to injury or a new illness that the patient will need to worry about. And, despite the thousands of medical mistakes already reported every year, so many more still go unreported.

One of the most dreaded results of medical malpractice is birth injury, any form which to a newly born child can turn a couple’s joy into severe pain, and a joyful occasion into a heartrending one. A number of the most commonly reported injuries include: cerebral palsy, a chronic and incurable brain disorder that impairs a child’s body movement, muscle coordination, sensation, cognition, speech, and other brain functions); subconjunctival hemorrhage or rupture of small blood vessels in the eyes; caput succedaneum or swelling of the head’s soft tissue; brain and spinal damage; and, erb’s palsy.

Erb’s palsy is a birth injury characterized by paralysis of the arm. This paralysis is a result of the severing of a group of the arm’s main nerves (which are part of the brachial plexus) which are found close to the neck. These nerves are actually among those responsible in allowing the arms, hands and fingers to feel and move. There are instances when these nerves are stretched in the event of dystocia, a difficult or abnormal delivery or labor. This happens when a medical staff assisting in the delivery carelessly uses force in pulling the baby from the birth canal. It cannot be denied that there are situations when pulling the baby from the birth canal becomes necessary, such as if the baby is quite big, if labor (prior to delivery) takes longer than it should, or during a breech delivery, that is when the feet are the first to come out; however, this should be done with utmost care to ensure that no harm will befall the child.

According to the website of The Driscoll firm, Erb’s palsy is an injury sustained during childbirth and that the most common reason for this is a mistake by a medical practitioner. The firm also explains, through its website, that the victim of this birth injury may be entitled to receive compensation from the liable party for all the damages resulting from this disorder.

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