Shoulder Dystocia Lawyer Denver, CO
Shoulder dystocia is a complication that occurs in 30,000 deliveries in the United States each year. This type of injury occurs when the baby’s head is delivered and their shoulder gets stuck behind the mother’s pelvis.
If your family experiences a birth injury, such as shoulder dystocia, contact a birth injury lawyer Denver, CO, such as Richard J. Banta, PC for help to create your case.
Why Does Shoulder Dystocia Happen?
Shoulder dystocia is a medical emergency that happens when your child gets their shoulder stuck behind your pelvis. The head passes easily, but if the child’s shoulders and chest are larger than the head, the chances of shoulder dystocia increases.
There are potentially high-risk complications to shoulder dystocia. To remove a child whose shoulder is stuck, the obstetrician must apply force, and that force can cause the tender nerves of the baby’s neck to be injured.
What Are the Effects of Shoulder Dystocia?
There are various injuries that can occur alongside shoulder dystocia.
Brachial plexus injury is one of the most serious injuries that can occur after shoulder dystocia during a birth. The brachial plexus is a complicated set of nerves that emerge from the spinal column in the neck. They travel across the shoulders, along the arms, to the hands and fingertips. Damage to these nerves can cause one or both arms to be paralyzed.
While some brachial plexus injuries are mild, not all are, in fact, most children that experience a brachial plexus injury have long-term disabilities.
Are There Risk Factors Associated With Shoulder Dystocia?
The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists says that most cases of shoulder dystocia cannot be predicted and they can occur in infants with normal birth weights. However, there are risk factors and warning signs that your gynecologist and obstetrician should be aware of while monitoring your pregnancy and birth.
These risk factors include, but are not limited to:
- A large baby who is over 8lbs. 14oz. has a high birth weight which can indicate shoulder dystocia.
- Maternal diabetes or gestational diabetes can cause shoulder dystocia because babies born to mothers with this disorder may have larger shoulders.
- The mother is obese during pregnancy.
- The infant is overdue, any child over 40 weeks will continue to grow and can become too large for the birth canal.
- The mother is short, and her pelvis is smaller.
- The mother has a contracted or platypelloid pelvis.
- The labor is unusually long.
- The mother gained 35+ pounds during her pregnancy.
If the mother has a history of shoulder dystocia with other children, or a history of having large babies, she may be more at risk to have a pregnancy that has shoulder dystocia. Another risk factor is when forceps or a vacuum extractor are used during delivery.
Can Shoulder Dystocia Be Prevented?
There are steps to reduce the risk of shoulder dystocia, such as screening procedures, prenatal care, and use of different technology during delivery. There are also medical strategies that are accepted by most of the medical community for use on children with shoulder dystocia.
If your family has experienced a birth injury, such as shoulder dystocia, contact a shoulder dystocia lawyer in Denver, CO such as Richard J. Banta, PC.