While many birth injuries occur in the delivery room, some begin during pregnancy. When an obstetrician fails to identify or diagnosis issues during the pregnancy, they dramatically increase the risk of a birth injury or birth defect. When expecting mothers understand birth injury risk factors, they increase their chances of raising concerns for an undiagnosed condition.
High Blood Pressure
A mother’s blood pressure determines the flow of nutrients and blood to the baby. If the blood pressure is too high, the baby’s blood flow is cut off. Doctors and nurses must constantly monitor an expecting mother’s blood pressure, as failing to maintain safe levels can result in premature birth or neonatal asphyxiation.
Weight gain is completely normal during pregnancy. After all, a baby is growing inside the mother. However, excessive maternal weight gain is linked to anincrease in brain and spinal defects, especially among mothers expecting twins.
Temporary (gestational) diabetes may accompany material weight gain. While this condition usually goes away after delivery, it presents a significant risk for the child. Expecting mothers experiencing gestational diabetes must receive a diagnosis and proper treatment. Unmonitored, this condition can cause neonatal asphyxiation, jaundice, premature birth, or abnormal growth.
Some babies are born big, and some risk factors cause them to grow even further. The longer the delay before birth, the larger the baby becomes. Large babies are much more likely to suffer a birth injury as they may become stuck in the birth canal or experience a difficult c-section.
Understanding Risk Factors
While these factors increase risk, the responsibility of the injury still rests with the doctor. Medical professionals are trained to identify and mitigate risk factors and should have a plan before they enter the delivery room. The listed factors make birth riskier, but that does not diminish the seriousness of the error.If your baby suffered a birth injury due to medical malpractice, you might have a case. If you’d like to schedule a free case consultation with an experienced Atlanta birth injury attorney from The Tolson Firm, don’t hesitate to send us an email or call (404) 800-9166.