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Injuries To Babies

Injuries to Babies

Fetal Distress - Mismanaged Medical Care Claims

There are a variety of factors that can cause your unborn child to become distressed during the labour process and many of you will have heard the term "Fetal distress".

It is your medical team's responsibility to monitor you and your baby closely and look for signs of fetal distress, as it may be necessary to act quickly in order to prevent any further damage being caused to your baby.

What is fetal distress?

Some babies can become unwell during labour because they are not getting enough oxygen. This is called fetal distress.

Diagnosing distress

During your pregnancy, the only way to tell if your baby is in distress is to monitor movement and the amount of times that the baby kicks, your doctor or midwife will continuously monitor the baby’s heart rate for any sign of complications or distress.

If a baby becomes distressed then the heart rate will become irregular and will usually drop (decelerate). The baby may also open their bowels whilst still in the womb, causing the (amniotic) fluid around baby to become green/brown stained – called meconium.

Reducing the risk of distress

There are a number of ways in which your medical team should reduce the risk of fetal distress and damage to your baby, such as intravenous fluids (a drip) or an injection to slow down your contractions which will allow the baby time to recover. It may be the case that you will simply need to lie on your side to relieve pressure. However, an emergency caesarean section may be necessary.

How a solicitor can help you

Your doctor or midwife should be alive to the risks and recognise the symptoms of fetal distress and act immediately. If the symptoms are recognised early enough then there is a good chance that injury will have been prevented and your baby will not suffer any lasting complications.

If there is a failure by the doctors or midwives to recognise and/or act promptly then your baby may suffer irreversible brain damage and have severely limited communication skills and may never be able to walk or stand and be wholly dependent on other people to take care of their daily needs in all aspects of their life as a result of the birth injury.

We understand that caring for a child with such a serious birth injury is traumatic for both you and your child and can have a severe financial, psychological and physical strain on the whole family.

Our medical negligence team are recognised experts in conducting claims of this nature. With the involvement of specialists such as care and occupational therapists, physiotherapists, speech and language therapists, educational and psychological experts, and accommodation experts, we will help you to secure a financial settlement that will provide both financial security and a care package moving forward ensuring that your child’s life-long care needs will be met.

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