Our Michigan birth injury lawyers handle cases involving shoulder dystocia injuries. This can be a very serious condition and can affect a child throughout his or her lifetime. There are occasions in which this shoulder injury should have been prevented. This can give rise to a child birth injury medical malpractice lawsuit.
Shoulder dystocia occurs when the anterior shoulder of the newborn cannot pass the pubic symphysis after the delivery of the head, or needs considerable manipulation to pass the pubic symphysis. Shoulder dystocia is diagnosed only when the shoulders of the infant fail to deliver after the fetal head. In this condition, the chin presses against the perineum walls.
There are “warning signs” to the doctors and nurses of a possible shoulder dystocia during birth. A “Turtle sign” is a commonly described feature, characterized by the appearance and retraction of fetal head that resembles a turtle withdrawing into the shell. When the newborn has a red puffy face this is also a sign of this condition. This occurs when the shoulder of the baby is stopped by maternal pelvis.
When warning signs present, the medical personnel have adopted certain procedures to prevent a serious shoulder dystocia in the baby. These methods include:
- Suprapubic pressure
- McRoberts maneuver
- Application of pressure on the anterior shoulder, bringing the fetus in an oblique position with head towards vagina (also called the Rubin II maneuver)
- Wood’s screw maneuver (also called the opposite of Rubin II maneuver), causing the anterior shoulder to turn to the posterior and vice versa
- Barnum’s maneuver (also called Jacquemier’s maneuver, allowing the delivery of the posterior shoulder first; this enables the forearm and hand to be identified and pulled gently.
- Gaskin maneuver, involving the movement of the mother to all-fours position, causing the pelvic outlet to widen (named after Ina May Gaskin, Certified Professional Midwife)
In addition to these methods, other drastic measures can help to prevent shoulder dystocia from occurring, including:
- Intentional clavicular fracture, reducing the shoulder diameter and allowing it to pass across the birth canal
- Symphysiotomy, making the birth canal opening laxer by breaking the tissue between the pubes bones, allowing the shoulders to pass through.
- Hysterotomy that allows the delivery of the obstructed shoulder
- Zavenelli’s maneuver; the fetal head is pushed back in by performing a cesaren section
If your baby has been diagnosed with shoulder dystocia and you believe that this was caused by a medical mistake, you should contact our birth injury lawyers today for you free, no obligation Case Review. We will obtain and review all of the medical records and determine whether a medical mistake caused this condition. If there was a mistake, we will file a lawsuit against the responsible medical providers.
Our law firm does not charge any legal fees unless we obtain a settlement for you and your child. We even pay all of the costs of the case. It literally costs you nothing to get started. Call us at (800) 6060-1717 today to speak with an experienced attorney about your case.