Articles Posted in Obstetrician Negligence

Tammy Esquivel was admitted to Contra Costa Regional Medical Center to deliver her baby. During her 26-hour labor, her contraction pattern became abnormal. She experienced intense abdominal pain. The fetal monitor showed a prolonged severe deceleration, prompting nurses to reposition Esquivel and discontinue Pitocin.

A new deceleration occurred. A special response team was then summoned to the bedside. Approximately an hour later, Esquivel’s daughter was delivered by emergency cesarean section.

The baby was later diagnosed as having suffered severe hypoxic-ischemic brain damage. The baby is now three. She requires a feeding tube and suffers from seizures among other medical problems.
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After delivering her second child at Roe Hospital, Ms. Doe, 32, experienced postpartum bleeding. Her pulse increased to 180 beats per minute. Her blood pressure plummeted to 74/44 mm Hg.

Ms. Doe’s treating obstetrician and the attending nurses tried unsuccessfully to stop the bleeding. They used a Bakri balloon and administered Hemabate solution. However, 90 minutes later, the doctor ordered a blood transfusion. Despite these efforts, Ms. Doe’s condition deteriorated and she later passed away.

She was survived by her husband and two minor children, including her newborn.
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Ms. Doe presented in active labor on an evening to Providence Regional Medical Center’s Pavilion for Women and Children. Ms. Doe, whose full-term baby was healthy at the time of her admission, was administered Pitocin and remained in labor throughout the night.

The next morning at around 5 a.m., significant signs of fetal distress occurred, including prolonged decelerations. Nurses informed the on-duty obstetrician, who was in surgery with another patient. The doctor ordered an operating room be opened for Ms. Doe.

Approximately three hours later, Ms. Doe’s daughter was delivered by cesarean section; the procedure was performed by a different obstetrician. The baby was diagnosed as having hypoxic-ischemic brain damage and — tragically — died just nine days later. The baby was survived by Ms. Doe, the baby’s mother, and her husband.
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D.W. was born at 25 weeks gestation at Jamaica Hospital Medical Center. The baby was diagnosed as having suffered hypoxic-ischemic brain damage resulting in spastic quadriplegia.

D.W. is now in the 6th grade. He attends special education classes and will never be able to live independently as a result of his brain injury.

A lawsuit was filed against the hospital and two doctors who provided care during D.W.’s delivery, alleging that they chose not to timely deliver D.W. by way of a cesarean section; the suit also alleged lack of informed consent and negligent post-delivery care. This included a failure to offer cranium cooling.
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Ms. Doe, 34, was admitted to a hospital experiencing signs and symptoms of placental abruption and preeclampsia. Although the fetal heart monitor allegedly revealed signs of fetal distress, no action was taken promptly to deliver her baby. Unfortunately, the baby died later in Ms. Doe’s womb. That night, Ms. Doe experienced hypertension and later developed HELLP Syndrome.

HELLP Syndrome is a serious complication of high blood pressure during pregnancy. The acronym HELLP stands for hemolysis, elevated liver enzymes and low platelet count. HELLP Syndrome usually develops before the 37th week of pregnancy but can occur shortly after delivery. Many women are diagnosed with preeclampsia beforehand. Symptoms include nausea, headache, belly pain and swelling.

In the case of Ms. Doe, the baby was subsequently delivered and the mother suffered a stroke. Ms. Doe now experiences balance, cognitive and physical issues and cannot return to her job where she earned approximately $32,000 per year.
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During delivery at a hospital, newborn Destiny Coleman suffered a brachial plexus injury.

The baby’s mother, individually and as her guardian, filed a lawsuit against the estate of Dr. Robert Lipari, the obstetrician who delivered her. He is now deceased. The lawsuit alleged obstetrics medical negligence.

The defense argued that the baby’s injuries resulted from maternal forces of labor, contractions, and maternal pushing, not mishandling the labor and delivery. The plaintiff maintained that that was the cause of the brachial plexus injury and was a result of the doctor’s negligence.
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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.
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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.
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This Supreme Court case comes from an appeal twice to the appellate court and originally from the Circuit Court of Adams County, Ill. The issue was “whether the ruling of the appellate court, 2016 IL App (4th) 150843, reversing the judgment and remanding this case for a new trial requires a trial de novo on all claims.” The first appellate court decision answered this question in the affirmative. The Illinois Supreme Court granted motions by the Illinois Association of Defense Trial Counsel to file an amicus curiae brief in support of defendant and the Illinois Trial Lawyers’ Association (ITLA) to file an amicus curiae brief in support of plaintiff’s position.

Because the resolution of the appeal concerned a narrow-certified question, the Illinois Supreme Court summarized the facts pertinent to making its decision.

In August 2015, plaintiffs Kristopher Crim and Teri Crim, acting on behalf of their biological son, Collin Crim, who was born on June 17, 2005, filed a fourth amended medical malpractice claim against the defendant, Gina Dietrich, D.O., alleging two claims: (1) Defendant failed to obtain Teri’s informed consent to perform a natural birth despite possible risks associated with Collin’s large size, and (2) defendant negligently delivered Collin, causing him injuries. The allegations supporting the informed consent claim are found in paragraph (a) through (j) of plaintiffs’ fourth amended complaint, while sub-paragraphs (k) and (l) concern the allegations related to professional negligence during the delivery of the child.
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Anna Scott was admitted to Jefferson Healthcare to deliver her first child. She was at first attached to a fetal heart monitor, which showed that her baby was healthy. She was then taken off the monitor for a six-hour period until her treating physician performed an artificial rupture of the membranes, after which Scott was then reattached to the fetal heart monitor.

The fetal heart monitor revealed that Scott’s baby had developed a worrisome heart rate pattern of repetitive variable decelerations with intermittent minimal variability.

Several hours later, Scott began to push. Her daughter, Lana, was born almost four hours later in a depressed condition with the umbilical cord wrapped tightly around her neck. Lana required 30 minutes of resuscitation. Lana’s Apgar scores were 3 at one minute and 4 at five minutes.
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