2 / 2 Medical Malpractice in Georgia: Common Birth Injuries and Exceeding Policy Limits

When parents learn they are expecting a child, it is the happiest moment of their life.  This happiness can turn into confusion, sadness, or chaos when a baby goes through birth trauma or birth injury. Medical malpractice cases in Georgia are increasing day by day, and it is very tragic to be hurt by doctors who are supposed to ensure your child’s safety during birth. It is very difficult for parents to decide what’s best for their family with painfully limited resources due to the emotional and financial worries that often accompany birth injuries. According to the AMA, more than 34% of doctors face a malpractice claim at some point in their career, and approximately 50% are prosecuted when they exceed the age of 55.

Common Birth Injuries Occur in Newborns:

A birth injury can occur due to physical trauma or untreated illness before, during, or after the birth of a child. Many common injuries are minor and heal on their own over time, while some serious injuries have severe and fatal consequences which parents have to face.

Following are the most common birth injuries in newborns:

Cerebral Palsy:

Cerebral palsy (CP) is a condition that damages a person’s motor function, balance, and posture. Newborns may cultivate cerebral palsy due to oxygen deficiency or head strain during delivery.

Facial Paralysis:

A condition in which the baby cannot move his face because too much pressure during delivery has damaged the facial nerve or nerves.

Oxygen Deprivation:

It is a doctor’s responsibility to monitor the fetal oxygen levels before, during, or after the delivery. Failing to do so can cause oxygen deficiency that damages the infant’s brain, affecting cognitive and physical disabilities.


A cephalohematoma refers to excess blood gathering beneath the scalp, resulting in hypotension, anemia, or jaundice. It happens when forceps or other delivery instruments cause cranial blood vessels to rupture.

Brachial Plexus Injuries:

The brachial plexus is a bunch of nerves that transmit signals from the brain to the arms. Plexus injuries occur when the infant’s head and shoulder are stretched too far during delivery, damaging the nerves and permanent disability.

Fractured Collarbones:

Collarbone or clavicle fractures can occur when the newborn’s shoulder gets stuck during delivery. Although these broken bones can heal with time, newborns may need to be restrained for weeks or months.

Perinatal Asphyxia:

Perinatal asphyxia occurs when the baby does not receive enough oxygen before, during, or after labor or delivery. Insufficient oxygen can result in brain damage, seizures, shock, or coma.

Caput Succedaneum:

Caput succedaneum is swelling in the infant’s scalp caused by excessive pressure on the head during delivery from the vaginal wall or improper use of forceps or vacuum extractors.

Subgaleal Hemorrhage:

This hemorrhage or hematoma occurs when excess blood accumulates outside the infant’s skull. This dangerous condition frequently happens as a result of vacuum-assisted delivery.

Spinal Cord Injuries:

Birth-related spinal cord injuries are relatively rare complications that can occur when providers pull or twist an infant’s neck too forcefully during delivery. That can result in permanent paralysis and life-changing cognitive problems.

Reasons for Medical Malpractice Cases in Georgia:

It is not necessary to constitute all birth injuries under medical practice. Delivering a baby is a risky procedure, and sometimes babies are born with injuries. When a health care professional fails to follow the reasonable standard of care while delivering a baby, it is known as Medical malpractice or medical negligence. According to Georgia law, a birth injury is medical malpractice when a preventable mistake causes the injury during delivery.

Following are some common reasons for a medical malpractice case in Georgia:

  • The size of the newborn is large
  • Premature birth of a baby
  • The newborn’s head is too large to fit through the mother’s pelvis
  • The mother experiences “dystocia” or difficult labor
  • The infant’s presentation is abnormal, such as buttocks or feet first
  • The mother requires a Caesarean section (C-section) to deliver
  • Providers fail to perform C-sections when needed
  • Providers prescribe potentially harmful medications to mothers or infants

How Can Medical Malpractice Lawyers in Georgia Help You?

If your child’s birth injury was an inevitable calamity caused by medical malpractice, you have the right to seek fair compensation from a birth injury claim. An experienced and trusted medical malpractice lawyer can assist you with compensation and investigate your medical malpractice cases in Georgia.

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