When many people hear the phrase “birth injury,” they picture a serious complication occurring during childbirth. And while it’s true that many birth injuries do occur immediately before, during, and after birth, some occur long before birth. Unfortunately, some of those injuries can and should be prevented, but they aren’t because doctors, midwives, and other providers are negligent.
Common examples of pre-birth injuries and errors include:
- Failure to diagnose—Babies and their mothers need frequent checkups and examinations to ensure that everything is progressing smoothly and without any complications. When doctors, midwives, and other providers fail to perform tests or interpret the results correctly, treatable conditions can worsen.
- Gestational diabetes—Pregnant women should have their blood sugar levels checked regularly. Gestational diabetes is common and treatable, but when it goes undiagnosed, it can put mothers and their unborn children at serious risk of complications.
- Not scheduling a C-section—Knowing the position a baby is in during the weeks and days leading up to the due date is essential. When a baby is in a breech position or another position that will make natural childbirth difficult, healthcare providers should begin making plans for the mother to deliver via C-section.
Sometimes, birth injuries that appear to occur only at birth or shortly after are actually the result of negligence dating back days or weeks before delivery. That’s because they are due to conditions that should have been found and treated.