According to statistics, umbilical cord entanglements occur approximately in 1.5 per 1,000 deliveries. Umbilical cord entanglements are rare, however can cause severe risk to the baby, because it can cut off the flow of oxygen and blood to the baby. Often times, umbilical cord injuries can be prevented by trained professionals, unfortunately medical mistakes happen. Doctors should be able to promptly recognize when the umbilical cord poses a danger to the baby and then take necessary steps to prevent injury or harm to the child.

Medical mistakes from an umbilical cord complication that can lead to birth injury include:

  • Failure to monitor cord blood velocities
  • Failure to conduct high resolution ultrasound to detect umbilical cord complications
  • Failure to perform caesarian section in
  • Failure to detect cord knots and nuchal cord (umbilical cord wrapped around part of the body)
  • Failure to perform color Doppler sonogram studies

When a medical mistake occurs and a baby suffers permanent injuries due to an umbilical cord complication, the parents of the child can pursue a medical malpractice lawsuit.  These laws seek compensation for the injuries to the child and also for the significant expenses it will take to care for the child over his or her lifetime.  This can include medical expenses, special education expenses, and even necessary housing costs.  An experienced umbilical cord death lawyer in Michigan will pursue all of these claims in a birth injury lawsuit.

The umbilical cord is the sustaining lifeline for unborn fetuses. Once that cord is cut, they are forever cut off from their mother’s bodies and must survive in the world they have been born into. The umbilical cord was once discarded after it had full filled its function but now there is a new use for the cord after birth and the information it contains.

Umbilical Cord Blood Gas and Acid-Base Analysis

A test can be performed on the blood of the umbilical cord to determine if the PH levels are within a normal range. These levels can show if there was intrapartum asphyxia, a condition where the oxygen supply to the fetus was comprised. The testing for blood gas and the acid-base or PH levels in the umbilical cord can show the metabolic state the infant is in when born. If the levels are too low, it can mean academia, which is when there is a build up of lactic acid that can be caused from lack of oxygen.

Testing of this nature is especially important in difficult births, cesarean procedures and premature births as they have a higher risk that complications may have compromised the oxygen flow before birth. However, even in deliveries with no evident issues, knowing the PH levels in the umbilical cord can alert medical staff of issues in the infant’s condition. Knowing there has been possible interruption in the oxygen flow can affect how the child’s ongoing care may need to be altered.

An Indicator of Oxygen Deprivation at Birth

The Committee of Obstetric Practice recommended that physicians do testing minimally for the following delivery situations:

  • Cesarean delivery for fetal compromise
  • Low 5-minute Apgar score
  • Severe growth restriction
  • Abnormal fetal heart rate tracing
  • Maternal thyroid disease
  • Intrapartum fever
  • Multifetal gestations
  • Acidemia and Brain Damage

Determining low PH levels at birth can be the first indicator that there was a lack of oxygen or hypoxia that could be enough to cause hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy (HIE). HIE means the brain has sustained injury from lack of oxygen that can lead to permanent brain damage and cerebral palsy. Knowing the factors are present for possible brain damage issues can increase the level of care and observation needed for the infant.

With the technology available to perform these tests, it seems reasonable to use them whenever possible. It is important to note that even with low PH levels, many infants have no lasting effects or brain damage. However, knowing there is a metabolic issue at birth can allow for closer observation to ensure everything possible is done for the health and well being of the child.

Reach Out to a Michigan Lawyer Regarding Umbilical Cord Death

If a doctor or hospital fails ignores the signs and symptoms of an umbilical cord complication and the baby suffers an injury as a result, you should contact our Michigan umbilical cord death lawyers immediately.  We will obtain all of your medical records and have them reviewed by our medical experts.  If our medical team determines that you received improper medical care, we will file a medical malpractice lawsuit seeking all damages allowed under Michigan law.  We will represent you and your child under our No Fee Promise, which means we charge no legal fees or costs unless we win you a settlement.

If you are concerned if medical negligence contributed to your child’s case of cerebral palsy in Chicago or other cities throughout Illinois, you can talk with attorney Jonathan Rosenfeld. Jonathan’s office, Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers handles birth injury cases on behalf of disabled children and their families (888) 424-5757.

Resources for umbilical cord gas:

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