Risk Factors and Prevention Measures

Brachial plexus injuries and cases of Erb’s palsy can be prevented through use of reasonable care in the delivery process. If a birth displays certain risk factors, doctors should perform a Caesarian delivery or take other steps to avoid injury.

Risk factors for brachial plexus injuries and Erb’s palsy include:

  • breech presentation
  • larger than average newborns
  • shoulder dystocia  or difficulty delivering the baby’s shoulder after the head comes out
  • deliveries with forcible head traction
  • any delivery in which a baby’s arms or shoulders are pulled, whether through natural forces or medical intervention

If any of these situations occur, doctors have procedures to prevent injury. Unfortunately, in some cases, they negligently fail to implement them. If a doctor does not perform a necessary Caesarian or uses excessive force when delivering a child, the doctor may have violated the standards of reasonable care for the delivery of newborns. Such violations have serious consequences.

For example, forcible deliveries can result in:

  • brachial plexus injury
  • Erb’s palsy
  • clavicular fracture
  • facial nerve paralysis
  • asphyxia
  • central nervous system injury
  • neuropsychiatric dysfunction
    death

Babies subjected to delivery malpractice can suffer well into adulthood. Contacting legal counsel early on can help determine your course of action before the passage of time takes away your legal rights. The attorneys at Kocian Law Group will protect your rights while your child recovers from the often devastating injuries caused by brachial plexus damage or other birth-related injuries.