Giving birth is not for the faint of heart.
In almost any theatrical environment, giving birth is quite easily one of the most challenging things women go through.
An epidural is typically given to help the soon-to-be mom manage her pain levels. Most of the time, this will occur without any problems.
However, this isn’t always the case. Even more alarming are the long-lasting side effects you and your baby may experience due to receiving an epidural improperly.
If you are suffering from pain, or if your baby is suffering from an injury, and you received an epidural, then I highly encourage you to keep reading.
We’re going to discuss how epidural injuries occur, the different types of epidural injuries and how you can file an epidural lawsuit.
Let’s get you and your baby on the path to relief.
How Do Epidural Injuries Occur?
Epidurals are only given by trained anesthesiologists because they are injected so close to the spinal cord during birth to relieve the mother of pain.
Women are typically offered an epidural if they are experiencing tremendous amounts of pain while giving birth. There are factors to consider when receiving an epidural, but at the end of the day, the choice is always up to the mother.
Common reasons why women suffer an epidural injury include:
- Receiving too many epidural injections
- Giving the epidural in the wrong location
- Injecting the epidural directly into the spinal cord
- Injecting an epidural when it’s not necessary
- Incorrectly dosing
Our spinal cords are so intricate and full of nerves that act as a telephone, sending signals and messages to the rest of your body. There are 31 pairs of spinal nerves that control your motor, sensory and other functions.
With all that being said, our spinal cords do a lot for us. If they become damaged while giving birth then there can be long-lasting impacts to you and your baby’s health.
If this happens, then you may be entitled to file an epidural lawsuit against your medical professional or hospital.
What Kind of Epidural Injuries Happen During Birth?
Since the spinal cord does so much for our body, any injury has the possibility of having a long-lasting effect. The most common injuries for the mothers include:
- Increased pain
- Paralysis or weakness
- Damage to your nerves
- Cerebral palsy
- Infections at the injection site
- Internal bleeding
- Spinal membrane damages
- Dural Puncture, also known as a “wet tap”. A dural puncture is when the injection punctures a membrane that covers the spinal cord and causes a leak. Some symptoms include nausea, vomiting and spinal headaches.
Any of the above injuries can have long-lasting impacts on your life and your baby’s life. This can include factors such as physical and mental disabilities and financial hardships from lifelong treatment.
Birth injuries that can affect your child include:
- Heart Disease
- Brain injuries
- Cerebral palsy
- Poor muscle development
- Sudden Infant Death
Most of these birth injuries will impact your child’s motor development skills, nervous system and brain development.
If you’ve experienced any of these injuries after receiving an epidural for childbirth, or if your baby has experienced any of these injuries, it’s imperative you speak with a malpractice attorney to figure out if you can file an epidural lawsuit.
Can You Sue the Hospital?
A medical malpractice attorney will need to prove three things for an epidural lawsuit.
- That your medical professional, or the hospital responsible, was providing you with medical treatment when the injury occured. Evidence to support this can include your doctor’s notes from your stay in the hospital to show you are their patient or were under their care.
- Your medical professional was negligent and provided you with substandard treatment. This can be difficult to prove in an epidural injury lawsuit, especially if you signed a medical liability waiver.
An example of negligence with an epidural injury, would be if you notified your anesthesiologist of your medical history of excessive bleeding, but your anesthesiologist gave you a dangerous dose of an epidural.
- The suspected negligence directly resulted in substantial harm.
An example to support this would be if you suffered, or still are suffering from any of the injuries we discussed earlier. Evidence to support your injury can include photos, videos, post-procedure prescription orders and receipts, and much more.
In cases with epidural injuries, there are several steps and procedures that should be followed to avoid any further risks.
If the hospital providing treatment, or your medical professional, failed to provide the standard level of care and thus gave you an epidural injury, consider filing a lawsuit.
By all means, negligence in medical malpractice is not the easiest thing to do.
An experienced and trusted medical malpractice attorney can help clarify if you have a case, what to prepare for next and will be there for you every step of the way.
What Should You Do if You Want to File a Lawsuit?
The best thing you can do is to get help!
Discuss your injury with a medical malpractice attorney today to get ready to file your epidural lawsuit.
Our team at Grover Lewis Johnson will review your injury over a free consultation and go over how we can help you receive the compensation you deserve.
Feel free to ask your potential lawyer the following:
- What their experience is with epidural lawsuits
- How many years they have been practicing for
- Will they be working on your lawsuit alone or on a team
It’s also helpful to have as much as your information prepared as possible. Information can be lists of dates and providers that treated you, especially those that were involved or had any part in your injury.
Most lawyers will charge for at least a consultation fee, among many other legal fees — that’s not our case.
At Grover Lewis Johnson, we understand you have a lot of expenses with any medical injury, so we don’t expect a single payment until we’ve won your case.
Reach out to our team today.