It is the obligation of a doctor to ensure that a mother’s delivery of a newborn occurs without incident. While there are some birth injuries that may occur despite receiving adequate medical care, there are many other cases where a doctor’s negligence will cause a child to suffer an injury. If a child suffers a birth injury like spina bifida, it could affect them for the rest of their life. If your child was a victim of medical malpractice and developed spina bifida, you should consult with an experienced Maryland infant spina bifida from birth injury lawyer.
At Bennett & Heyman, we recognize how a severe birth injury can impact a newborn’s life, and we are here to help you hold a negligent doctor accountable for their actions. You do not have to fight your medical malpractice case alone, contact Bennett & Heyman at (410) 429-7856 to schedule a free legal consultation. You may also contact us online.
Birth Injuries that Can Cause Spina Bifida
Spina bifida is a medical condition that is identified by abnormal spine development. Specifically, this condition occurs when a newborn’s vertebrae are not enclosed, which leaves the nerves in the spine exposed. As a result, the exposed nerves in the spine could cause a number of health issues for a newborn. Spina bifida is a condition that typically occurs in the lower back; however, it may occur in other spots of the spine as well.
There are multiple types of spina bifida that a newborn may experience:
- Spina bifida meningocele – Occurs when the bones in the spinal cord begin to pass through the opening in the spine
- Spina bifida occulta – Happens when one or multiple parts of the vertebrae are exposed but the spinal cord is not damaged
- Spina bifida myelomeningocele – This form of spina bifida occurs when the spinal column appears to protrude from a baby’s back as a sac of skin
Spina bifida can be difficult to discover for a parent who is unaware of what to look for. Fortunately, there are some signs and symptoms that may indicate that a child has developed spina bifida. One of the most common symptoms of spina bifida is a hairy patch or birthmark in the area where the spine is exposed. However, infants often have patches of hair that can remain on the body for weeks after birth, which could make it difficult to diagnose this condition. Other signs and symptoms of spina bifida include:
- Nerves being exposed through the back
- Weakness in some regions of the body
- Loss of sensation
This is not an exhaustive list.
A Maryland doctor could be held liable for a child developing spina bifida if they failed to monitor the child throughout the pregnancy. While there few treatments to stop a child from developing spina bifida, a doctor could help by taking extra precautions with a child.
To learn more about proving medical malpractice in a lawsuit, you should continue reading and speak with an experienced Maryland birth injury lawyer for spina bifida.
Proving Negligence in a Medical Malpractice Claim in Maryland
Our firm understands the burden associated with caring for a child living with a serious disability, and we are here for you. If you choose to pursue a medical malpractice lawsuit against the doctor or hospital responsible for your child’s spina bifida in Maryland, we are ready to fight for you.
To prove a claim of medical malpractice, a plaintiff must demonstrate that a medical practitioner acted negligently when treating their child. There are multiple elements that must be proven for a plaintiff to show that a doctor acted negligently:
- The defendant (doctor) owed the plaintiff (newborn) a duty of care
- The defendant breached their duty of care (e.g., failed to monitor the child for spina bifida)
- The plaintiff suffered an injury due to the defendant’s breach
- The plaintiff sustained an injury that is compensable by a court of law
It is important to note that before a victim can prevail in a medical malpractice lawsuit, they must also show that they had a doctor-patient relationship with the doctor in question. This means that their interaction with the doctor must amount to more than casual advice in order to seek compensation in a court of law.
Once a plaintiff has proven that a doctor acted negligently, they can be awarded damages for their losses and injuries. Compensatory damages can be awarded for economic and noneconomic losses. Economic losses are losses that are easy to calculate because they derive from bills associated with the injury. Noneconomic losses are more difficult to quantify because they often consider subjective factors. The following is a list of compensatory damages that a plaintiff can be awarded for a medical malpractice lawsuit:
- Medical bills, medical equipment, costs of medication
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of wages or future loss of wages
If you wish to know more about filing a medical malpractice claim against a doctor for spina bifida in Maryland, you should contact our firm immediately.
Contact Our Experienced Maryland Lawyer for Infant Spina Bifida from Birth Injury
If your child developed spina bifida due to an incident of medical malpractice, contact an experienced Maryland lawyer for spina bifida birth injuries. The experienced medical malpractice lawyers at Bennett & Heyman possess a wealth of experience, and we would be honored to use this knowledge to represent you. To schedule a free consultation to discuss your legal options, contact Bennett & Heyman at (410) 429-7856. You may also contact our firm online.