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Baltimore Personal Injury Lawyer / Baltimore Shoulder Dystocia Lawyer

Baltimore Shoulder Dystocia Lawyer

Having a baby can be exciting, but delivering the child is not always an easy process. Trying to fit a 7- or 8-pound baby through a vagina often comes with complications. Babies can and do get stuck along the way.

This is called shoulder dystocia. It happens when one or both of the baby’s shoulders get stuck inside the pelvis during vaginal delivery. While most babies with shoulder dystocia are delivered safely, it is still a medical emergency.

Shoulder dystocia is diagnosed by these three signs:

  • The baby’s head has been delivered but the mother cannot push the baby’s shoulders out.
  • At least one minute has passed since the baby’s head has emerged but not their body.
  • The baby requires medical intervention to be delivered successfully.

It’s hard to tell when shoulder dystocia might occur. However, if the doctor fails to identify it and safely deliver the baby, then it may be medical malpractice. Poor use of a vacuum extractor or forceps to deliver the baby through the birth canal may be a contributing factor. A Baltimore shoulder dystocia lawyer from Furman | Honick Law can assess your case. Contact us today.

Risk Factors

Shoulder dystocia is more likely to occur in these situations:

  • The baby weighs more than 8 pounds, 13 ounces.
  • The opening to the pelvis is too small.
  • The baby is in the wrong position.
  • The mother has diabetes.
  • The mother is obese.
  • The baby is at more than 40 weeks gestation.
  • The mother has a contracted or flat pelvis.
  • The labor or delivery is unusually long.
  • The mother has gained more than 35 pounds during pregnancy.
  • The mother has a history of giving birth to large babies.

Complications of Shoulder Dystocia

Shoulder dystocia comes with complications that can affect both the mother and baby.

Complications that can affect the mother include:

  • Extreme hemorrhaging (heavy bleeding) after giving birth
  • Severe tearing of perineum (the area between your vagina and anus)
  • Abnormal connection between your vagina and rectum
  • Rupture of the uterus during labor
  • Separation of the pubic bones

The most common complication of shoulder dystocia in the baby is brachial plexus palsy. This is caused by damage to the brachial plexus nerves, which run from the baby’s spinal cord in their neck through their arm. Damage to these nerves can cause weakness and paralysis.

Other possible complications to the baby include:

  • Fractures to your baby’s collarbone or upper arm
  • Compressed umbilical cord, caused by getting trapped between the baby’s arm and the mother’s bone
  • Horner’s syndrome, which is a rare disorder affecting the baby’s eyes and face

Contact Furman | Honick Law Today

Shoulder dystocia is often caused by medical mistakes. Doctors should know the signs and when they should intervene.

Medical malpractice can occur if your doctor failed to avoid or treat shoulder dystocia. The team from Furman | Honick Law can assist you with your case. Contact an experienced Baltimore shoulder dystocia lawyer today to schedule a free consultation. Call (410) 844-6000 or fill out the online form.