South Carolina Birth Injury Attorneys Representing Your Erb’s Palsy Claim
Advocating for families in Rock Hill, Anderson, Columbia, Sumter, and Georgetown
The birth of your child should be a joyous occasion. Unfortunately, the physician you trust to bring your child into the world may not always meet the standards of proper medical care. The result can be tragic, with severe injury to an innocent newborn. One of the most serious birth injuries is Erb’s palsy, a muscular disorder that can impact your child’s entire life.
When the actions of a medical professional result in Erb’s palsy, the experienced South Carolina birth injury attorneys of McGowan, Hood, Felder & Phillips, LLC, are here to provide you with the representation that you deserve. We have the skill, resources, and dedication to get you the compensation you need when a doctor’s negligence harms your baby.
What is Erb’s palsy?
Erb’s palsy is a condition that causes loss of muscle movement in the arms. It stems from damage to nerves surrounding the shoulder and often affects newborns following a particularly difficult labor and delivery. There are various levels of severity for the condition, including:
- Injury limited to the upper arm, right under the shoulder area
- Injury to the upper and lower sections of the arm
- Injury to the hand, which is commonly called Klumpke paralysis, and may also cause drooping of the eye on the opposite side of the body from the arm injury
If you baby has suffered from this condition due to the negligence of a medical professional, our South Carolina Erb’s palsy lawyers are prepared to fight for you.
How malpractice or negligence can lead to Erb’s palsy
Erb’s palsy may result from a variety of conditions, including a breech birth or a fetus that is considerably large in size. However, the actions of the attending obstetrician when faced with these complications are also determinative of the outcome. If the physician and medical staff fail to act in an appropriate manner, the risk of Erb’s palsy can significantly increase. Some medical actions that cause the condition include:
- Pulling on the infant’s shoulders. When guiding an infant through the birth canal, the doctor must use caution and delicacy. Sometimes, when the baby does not easily progress after delivery of the head, the physician may pull on the shoulders in an attempt to work them loose. If this action is taken with too much force, the excessive traction of the shoulders moving against the vaginal walls may lead to Erb’s palsy. This is generally referred to as shoulder dystocia.
- Negligent use of delivery instruments. When a physician chooses to use forceps or vacuum extraction to assist with delivery of the baby, he or she must use the instrument correctly and exercise extreme care. Failure to meet either of these standards may cause the baby’s shoulders and neck to pull towards one side or the other during passage through the birth canal, resulting in Erb’s palsy.
- Failure to perform a C-Section. In situations where the infant is breech or positioned in an unsafe manner within the womb, physicians have the option of delivering by C-Section. Though not the most ideal method of delivery, the purpose of a C-Section is to lower substantial risks and to err on the side of caution to deliver a healthy baby. If the attending doctor negligently fails to employ this option and Erb’s palsy results, the doctor may be found liable for medical malpractice.
When an infant is diagnosed with Erb’s palsy, the primary goal is to promote normal movement as early as possible in the developmental stage. While this is generally a reachable goal, it is not easy or inexpensive. Our experienced South Carolina birth injury lawyers understand the substantial cost of treating Erb’s palsy and the toll that it takes on the entire family. We work with a variety of medical experts to adequately quantify the financial impact that Erb’s palsy places on a family. We then present this information to the court in a comprehensive manner that justifies the level of requested compensation.
Contact a South Carolina Erb’s palsy attorney to protect your baby
If a healthcare professional acted negligently during labor and caused harm to your baby, get the legal help you need as soon as possible. McGowan, Hood, Felder & Phillips, LLC, has been successfully litigating in the courts of South Carolina for more than 20 years. Our skilled South Carolina obstetrical malpractice attorneys do not back down from challenging cases, putting the needs of their clients first. Call us at 803-327-7800 or fill out our contact form to make an appointment for a free case evaluation. We have offices conveniently located in Rock Hill, Anderson, Columbia, Sumter, and Georgetown.