An umbilical cord provides a child with essential nutrients and blood while they are in the womb. However, if the umbilical cord becomes compressed during delivery, it could cause an infant to sustain a serious injury. That is why it is necessary for a doctor to act quickly if an infant’s umbilical cord is compressed during delivery. If your infant was injured due to the compression of their umbilical cord, consult with an experienced Maryland attorney for umbilical cord compression injuries.
Rice, Murtha & Psoras is here to listen to your legal concerns and help determine whether you have a valid case against the medical practitioner that injured your child. Infants should not have to suffer because a doctor failed to perform their job adequately. To schedule a free legal consultation to speak about your potential case, contact Rice, Murtha & Psoras at (410) 694-7291. You can also talk with our firm online.
Common Causes of Umbilical Cord Compression Injuries in Maryland
The umbilical cord is a tube that connects an unborn child to the mother’s placenta. Umbilical cords can reach an average length of 25 feet and are needed to supply blood, nutrients, and oxygen to a child. The umbilical cord can also transport waste from the child back to the placenta. With these many functions, it is easy to see why the compression of an umbilical cord can seriously harm a child.
Umbilical cord compression typically occurs because the cord prolapses. Umbilical cord prolapse is when the umbilical cord slips from the womb into the birth canal just before a mother gives birth. As a result, the pressure in the birth canal could cause the umbilical cord to become compressed.
Besides slipping into the birth canal, there are various circumstances that could cause an umbilical cord to prolapse. For example, if an umbilical cord becomes entangled around the infant’s neck in the womb, this is a severe issue. If the umbilical cord tightens around the child’s neck during delivery, the child could suffocate and possibly experience brain damage.
A doctor can discover an entangled umbilical cord by ordering an ultrasound, at which point they should discuss measures to avoid the asphyxiation of the infant. While a child may untangle the cord while moving in the womb, this does not always occur. As a result, a doctor may have to perform a cesarean section to protect the child.
Another common cause of umbilical cord compression is a knot forming in the umbilical cord. A knot in an umbilical cord can cut off a percentage of blood and oxygen to the infant, which can cause other medical issues.
Aggressive uterine contractions can also cause an umbilical cord to compress during labor. This is especially true if a doctor administers Pitocin to increase the frequency of a mother’s contractions. Pitocin could cause the contractions to become violent, which can harm the umbilical cord and the fragile child.
To learn more about the risk factors, signs, and symptoms of umbilical cord compression, you should continue reading and speak with an experienced Maryland lawyer for umbilical cord compression injuries.
Risk Factors and Symptoms of Umbilical Cord Compression Injuries in Maryland
There are a variety of risk factors and symptoms of umbilical cord compression that a parent should know about. For example, a breech birth could lead to compression of the cord. A breech birth is when an infant’s feet or buttocks enter the birth canal first. The prolonged time in the birth canal due to this position can cause the umbilical cord to flatten.
Other risk factors for umbilical cord compression include:
- Premature deliveries before 37 weeks of pregnancy
- An excessive amount of amniotic fluid in the womb also referred to as hydramnios
- A mother who had twins in the past or is carrying twins
- An umbilical cord that extends several inches longer than 25 feet
There are some signs and symptoms of umbilical cord compression that a mother and infant may experience. For example, if the heart rate of an infant suddenly drops, this may be due to the prolapse of the umbilical cord. Specifically, a doctor should be concerned if a child’s heart rate drops below 100 beats per minute. Additionally, if the umbilical cord slips into the birth canal, a mother may be able to notice.
Note, however, that a doctor must uphold the standard of care and take action when they are aware of an umbilical cord prolapse. If a doctor fails to prevent an avoidable injury to a child or mother, they could be held liable for medical malpractice.
Our firm can help you weigh your legal options if you wish to seek compensation against the doctor responsible for your child’s injuries. Please speak with us today regarding your potential claim.
Work with Our Committed Maryland Lawyer for Umbilical Cord Compression Injuries
If your newborn suffered a birth injury due to medical negligence, you should contact an experienced Maryland lawyer for umbilical cord compression injuries. Medical malpractice lawyer Randolph Rice has over two decades of legal experience, and he would like to use his experience to help you pursue compensation for your child’s injuries. To schedule a free consultation to discuss your legal options, contact Rice, Murtha & Psoras at (410) 694-7291. You may also contact our firm online.