Injuries during childbirth happen regularly. In most situations, the injuries to the mother and child are minor and will heal quickly with no lasting effects. However, in some cases the injuries can cause problems that may last for years or even a lifetime.
One situation in which injuries during childbirth are not uncommon involves deliveries using forceps. Forceps are an instrument that looks like a couple of spoons, and they are used to guide a baby’s head out of the birth canal.
Forceps are not used in most deliveries. In fact, they are normally only used during the second stage of labor (when the mother is pushing), if the labor is not progressing as it should. They may also be used if the baby’s health requires that the delivery occur immediately. Forceps deliveries do not always work, and if they fail a C-section may be needed. Therefore, forceps deliveries should only occur at hospitals where C-sections can be performed.
Not all situations are appropriate for forceps. The baby may be too large to fit through the birth canal. The baby may not be far enough along in the birth canal. The baby could have certain medical conditions that would mean forceps should not be used. Also, if the position of the baby’s head cannot be determined, forceps should not be used.
Both mother and child can be harmed by forceps. A child can suffer serious injuries to the face, seizures, internal bleeding, and even skull fractures. In addition, forceps can damage the mother internally. Some mothers experience damage to the urinary tract, uterine rupture, and pelvic organ prolapse.
If you or your child were harmed during childbirth by forceps, it did not necessarily occur because of medical malpractice. However, it’s worth talking to an attorney about. Call me, Los Angeles birth injury attorney Conal Doyle at 310-385-0567. I can help. Call today to learn more or to schedule a free consultation.