Articles Posted in Birth Injury

In 2017, after Doe’s birth at King’s County Hospital Center, the baby was admitted to the facility’s NICU for glucose monitoring.

Doe had an IV placed in her left foot and suffered an infiltration that resulted in blistering, swelling, necrosis and permanent scarring. Doe’s father, on her behalf, sued the New York Health and Hospital Corp., alleging that the hospital was negligent for choosing not to properly monitor the IV.

Before trial, the parties settled for $225,000.
Continue reading

Clara Roman was born prematurely. Several months after her delivery, she was admitted to Jersey Shore University Medical Center to undergo repair of an inguinal hernia.

A week after the surgery, Clara’s parents returned her to the hospital for treatment of a recurrent bulge. The anesthesiologist, Dr. William Rahal, intubated Clara in preparation for emergency surgery. That surgery was later canceled.

While still under the anesthesiologist’s care, Clara suffered oxygen deprivation, which resulted in a severe brain injury.
Continue reading

A Washington State Appellate Court held that a trial court had not abused its discretion in allowing a juror with a connection to the defendant doctor to serve on a jury in a medical malpractice case.

In this case, a child and his parents sued the obstetrician, Dr. Kevin Harrington, alleging his negligence during the child’s delivery, which led to his brachial plexus nerve injury.

The family of the child sought to exclude various prospective jurors for cause, claiming they had a child delivered by the defendant physician, including Juror 25. Although the court excused several of the jurors, Juror 25 ultimately served in a jury, which returned a verdict for the defendant physician. The family of the child appealed from this verdict.
Continue reading

When Yong Juan Zhao gave birth to her son “S.,” the baby suffered an avoidable brachial plexus injury, which severely and permanently impaired the function of his right arm. During her pregnancy and S.’s birth, Zhao was attended by an obstetrician employed by a federally supported grant clinic in southern Illinois; the doctor was considered an employee of the U.S. Public Health Service under 42 U.S.C. 233(g).

Zhao sued for medical malpractice under the Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA). The court found that the obstetrician had been negligent and signed a judgment awarding Zhao, on behalf of S., $2.6 million in lost earnings and $5.5 million in noneconomic damages.

S. was 5 years old at the time of the trial.
Continue reading

Ms. Doe was pregnant with twins; they shared a placenta but had their own amniotic sacs. During her pregnancy, one of the twins, Twin B, had an abnormal velamentous cord insertion and exhibited persistent absent end-diastolic flow, which indicated underlying fetal vascular stress. Velamentous cord insertion is a complication of pregnancy in which the umbilical cord is inserted in the fetal membranes. In a normal pregnancy, the umbilical cord inserts into the middle of the placenta and is surrounded by the amniotic sac.

At 24 weeks, a Doppler ultrasound revealed reverse end-diastolic flow (REDF) in Twin B’s umbilical artery. Reversal of the umbilical artery end-diastolic flow or velocity can be an ominous sign when detected after 16 weeks of pregnancy. In extreme situations, such as severe intrauterine growth restriction, the arterial blood flow can reverse directions at the end of diastole. This is referred to as a reversed end-diastolic flow.

When this condition was recognized, Ms. Doe’s treating maternal-fetal medicine specialist did not hospitalize her but continued seeing her every week until 27 weeks gestation. Two weeks later, Twin B died.
Continue reading

After Mary Hunt was diagnosed as having possible preeclampsia, she was admitted to a hospital for induction of labor. Her treating physician ordered Pitocin and transferred her to an on-call obstetrician, Dr. Larry Clark.

Dr. Clark delivered Mary’s son vaginally using forceps. As a result of the difficult delivery combined with the forceful use of forceps, the baby suffered abrasions to his head, a cephalohematoma, and bleeding within the brain.

The child is now 3 years old and suffers from right-sided hemiplegia, developmental and speech delays as well as vision problems.
Continue reading

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit has affirmed a federal court’s exclusion of evidence regarding the defendant physician’s general reputation on internet websites.

In this case, Sheena Dorman, Dillon Ming and their minor child sued obstetrician Dr. Richard G. Welch and his medical practice, Annapolis OB-Gyn Associates P.A., alleging that the defendant physician’s negligence in applying lateral force during the child’s birth led to the development of Erb’s palsy.

The jury returned a verdict in favor of the defendants. The plaintiffs appealed, challenging several of the trial court’s evidentiary rulings.
Continue reading

Terri Franklin had a history of hypertension. For that condition, she was prescribed Benicar. When she became pregnant at age 30, she continued to take Benicar while receiving prenatal care from obstetrician Dr. Alvin Sermons.

Her baby had a stroke in-utero, and after the birth, the baby was diagnosed as having brain damage, skull abnormalities, and intestinal and kidney problems. It is likely that the child will require a kidney transplant in the near future.

Franklin and the child’s father, individually and on the child’s behalf, sued Dr. Sermons and his practice, Dunwoody Obstetrics & Gynecology P.C., alleging that Dr. Sermons had negligently allowed Franklin to continue on the blood pressure medication while she was pregnant.
Continue reading

Kimberly Kirkwood-Boulter was admitted to Massachusetts General Hospital to deliver her first baby. During labor and delivery, the nurse responsible for monitoring the baby’s heart rate had difficulty differentiating Kirkwood-Boulter’s heartbeat from her unborn baby’s. This occurred during the second stage of labor, which lasted about 6 hours.

In spite of all of this, Kirkwood-Boulter was encouraged to push, and the obstetrical team did not switch from intermittent fetal monitoring by way of a handheld device to continuous monitoring.
Kirkwood-Boulter’s baby boy was born severely acidotic and not breathing. The baby’s Apgar scores were one at one minute and three at five minutes, which are low scores for a newborn. Now the child is 6 years old and suffers from brain damage. He cannot walk, talk or feed himself.

Kirkwood-Boulter and her husband sued the hospital, members of its delivery team, and the employer of the attending nurse, Cross Country Staffing Inc. It was alleged in the lawsuit that these defendants chose not to provide continuous monitoring during the labor and delivery.
Continue reading

This case arose from the tragic set of events involving A.F., a baby born with severe respiratory problems who developed permanent brain damage. A.F.’s mother, Kayla Butts, brought this lawsuit claiming that A.F.’s brain damage was caused by the medical malpractice of Dr. Sarah Hardy. It was alleged that Dr. Hardy should have transferred Baby A.F. from the hospital where A.F. was born to a hospital with a neonatal intensive care unit that could have provided the care A.F. needed in the hours after her birth.

After a bench trial, the district court agreed and entered judgment in favor of Kayla Butts for over $7 million in damages. On appeal, the U.S. Court of Appeals considered whether she presented sufficient evidence to establish that Dr. Hardy violated the applicable standard of care.

Because the district court’s finding on that issue was clearly erroneous, the court of appeals reversed the district court’s order and vacated the judgment against Dr. Hardy.
Continue reading