Despite every parent’s expectations, sometimes childbirth does not go as expected. Frequently, labor and delivery can become stalled and the use of medical tools may become necessary to remove the child from the birth canal. There are two main techniques that medical professionals use to assist with the final stages of delivery: (1) forceps and (2) vacuum extraction.
Both techniques involve gently pulling the newborn through the birth canal. Because a baby’s skull is extremely soft and the skull bones have not yet fused together completely, babies are susceptible to bruising and disfigurement when forceps or vacuum extraction are used to assist with delivery. If your baby has been injured as a result of a forceps-assisted delivery, the Chicago area birth injury attorneys at Ankin Law Offices can help you determine whether medical malpractice was the cause of these injuries.
Forceps are a pair of curved metal tongs that grasp the baby’s head on each side and allow the doctor to gently pull the baby through the birth canal. Bruising and abrasions are the most frequent injury that a newborn can suffer as a result of the use of forceps. Fortunately, the bruises and abrasions usually fade over the first few days and weeks of the newborn’s life, but in severe cases, the marks may not disappear and they may become a permanent disfigurement. In addition, if too much pressure is placed on the sides of the skull when the forceps are used, indentations can appear on the baby’s head.
Before labor and delivery, a doctor should explain to the mother the circumstances under which a delivery assistance technique, such as forceps or vacuum extraction, might be necessary. If the use of forceps or vacuum extraction becomes necessary, the doctor must use the utmost care to ensure that there are no birth injuries as a result of the assistance technique. If your child has suffered a birth injury as a result of a delivery assistance technique, you should promptly consult a medical malpractice attorney. The Chicago area attorneys at Ankin Law Offices are highly skilled personal injury attorneys with extensive experience handling a variety of medical malpractice claims involving birth injuries such as forceps and vacuum extraction injuries, cerebral palsy and bone fractures.