Articles Posted in Shoulder Dystocia

A judge has ruled that a doctor violated the standard of care and found him responsible for causing cerebral palsy in a child during a traumatic birth where the doctor had to use a vacuum extraction for almost 50 minutes. The cerebral palsy lawsuit was filed by the child’s parents and accused the doctor of medical malpractice. The judge found that the doctor had caused a serious birth injury when she tried to deliver the baby through vacuum extraction, which uses suction to pull the child’s head through the birth canal during difficult deliveries. The child is now 9 years-old and will require around-the-clock care for his entire life because of his brain damage and cerebral palsy. The doctor herself testified that it was the most disastrous delivery that she’d ever been a part of. An expert witness testified that the baby’s scalp was bobby and that he suffered a sugaleal hematoma, which occurs when blood pools between the scalp and the skin. He did not breathe for 10 minutes and suffered seizures within 24 hours of being born. The judge noted that as a result of the violation of standard of care “severe and repeated trauma as well as shoulder dystocia was inflicted” on the victim. To learn more about the cerebral palsy lawsuit, please click the link.

A family was awarded nearly $900,000 in a birth injury lawsuit against a hospital and two doctors. The family accused the doctors and hospital of negligence in the handling of the woman’s labor and delivery, which caused a permanent shoulder injury to their son. The jury awarded the family $893,684 after the seven-day trial including $110,000 for future loss of earning capacity. The birth injury lawsuit alleged that the doctors should have known that the baby would likely weigh more than 10 pounds at delivery. As a result of this inaction, the baby’s shoulder got stuck behind his mother’s pubic bone after his head was delivered. This prevented his body from easily following his head during delivery. The birth complication caused injury to the nerves in the baby’s shoulder when his nerves were stretched. He has suffered permanent injuries, pain and suffering, disability and expenses as a result of the limited strength, dexterity and motion in his shoulder. To read more about the birth injury trial, please click the link.

A doctor recently unveiled medical software that may predict the probability of shoulder dystocia during birth. Shoulder dystocia is one of the most common complications during delivery and 20% of cases result in birth injury. Although some doctors believe that shoulder dystocia is both “unpredictable and unpreventable,” users of the new software hope to calculate the risk of this birth injury through algorithms based on data from the mother and baby. Read more about this new software that may predict shoulder dystocia in newborns.

A computer program is shaping up to be the new hero in the prevention of shoulder dystocia and brachial plexus injuries. A new software program, called CALM Shoulder Screen, has been developed that calculates the risk of shoulder dystocia with permanent injury. The program analyzes several factors, including the mothers’ height and weight and determines whether they are at risk of suffering shoulder dystocia during delivery. Those ascertained to be at high risk can avoid the birth injury by opting for delivery by c-section. Obstetricians throughout the country have began utilizing this web-based system and it has been proven effective to be effective. The program can be used anytime after the 37th week of gestation.

For more information about this birth injury prevention software, click here.

A new study published in this month’s issue of the American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology finds that women who experience shoulder dystocia incur an increased risk of the complication recurring in subsequent deliveries. The study, which looked at the deliveries of womens’ second children, found that shoulder dystocia occurred in 0.8% of all women, but that women with shoulder dystocia in their first delivery had a 7.3% risk of recurrence. While the prior experience of shoulder dystocia does increase the likelihood of future delivery complications, the study’s authors emphasized that the baby’s birthweight is the most important factor in predicting the probability of the birth injury’s occurrence.

Click the following link for more information on the shoulder dystocia study.

A new study has found that treating even mild gestational diabetes significantly reduces the risk of certain birth injuries and lessens the need for emergency C-sections. Gestational diabetes occurs during late pregnancy, when a mother’s body is unable to produce and use all the insulin that it needs. Without enough insulin, the body is unable to convert the glucose into energy and, as a result, it builds up in the mother’s blood. This blood then reaches the baby through the placenta, giving it more sugar than it needs. The baby stores this excess energy as fat. Because the baby is larger than normal, there is an increased risk of its shoulders becoming lodged behind the mother’s pelvis during delivery, a situation known as shoulder dystocia. If the doctors and healthcare providers are negligent in their delivery, the baby can suffer from Brachial Plexus injuries. These injuries can be severe and permanent and may include paralysis and deformation of the baby’s arms. If you have been diagnosed with even a mild case of gestational diabetes, it is therefore important that you receive proper treatment in order to reduce these risks.

Read more about gestational diabetes and its risks here.

A common birth injury known as Brachial Plexus can leave a newborn baby injured. This birth injury is commonly associated when pulling and injury occurs to a infant’s neck or shoulders during the birth. To illustrate to those parents whose injured newborn has suffered from this birth injury please watch the video below. If you think a birth injury was caused by a doctor or physician error a medical malpractice lawsuit may be filed. Levin and Perconti is not responsible for the content and manufacture of this video; this video was obtained via YouTube.



Next week, October 19-26, will be the 9th annual Brachial Plexus Injury Awareness Week. This event was created by the United Brachial Plexus Network, Inc. with the goal of increasing general awareness of brachial plexus injuries.

A brachial plexus injury occurs when the network of spinal nerves which controls the muscles of the fingers, hand, arm, and shoulder, called the brachial plexus, is damaged. These nerves originate at the back of the neck and extend through the axilla (armpit) and into the arm, where they form 3 trunks in the upper shoulder. Erb’s Palsy refers to an injury to the upper trunk while a lower trunk injury is called Klumpke’s Palsy.

A brachial plexus injury can result in full or partial paralysis of one or both arms and can be permanent if the nerves do not completely heal. In less severe instances, the nerve damage may cause weakness or a loss of muscle control in the arm, hand, or wrist, resulting in the impaired ability to grasp, extend, or reach, or a lack of feeling or sensation in the arm or hand. Physical appearance can also be affected.

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