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Birth Injury for Failed Forceps Delivery

$1,300,000 – Medical Malpractice/Negligence

Facts

Failed forceps delivery and delay in performing C-Section leads to brain injury in a baby, born with umbilical cord wrapped twice around his head.

On February 4th, Plaintiff Mother presented in labor at Defendant Zoe Hospital early in the morning with an approximately 37-week gestation pregnancy. Defendant Dr. Roe was on call for her primary obstetrician and assumed care of mother and her unborn child. After approximately nine and a half hours of labor, Dr. Roe attempted forceps delivery with Keilland rotation, but no further descent occurred. Dr. Roe applied Luikart-McLane forceps and traction, which were also unsuccessful. Dr. Roe made three attempts with the forceps before moving to perform a Cesarean section, almost one hour later. Baby Doe was delivered with an APGAR score of zero, a tight nuchal cord times two that was dry of blood, and marked molding of the head. Resuscitation efforts were begun, and Baby Doe eventually established a pulse and was placed on a ventilator.

Allegations/Contentions

Plaintiff claimed that the doctor was negligent in failing to promptly deliver the baby, who was in fetal distress, and in the manner the forceps were used. The mother claimed the hospital’s nursing failed to distinguish between the heart rates coming from the mother versus the fetus in the second stage of labor. In addition, they failed to follow their own hospital policies and place an internal monitor in a high-risk situation. They failed to discuss with the physician the station of the fetus before he attempted a mid- to high-forceps delivery.

Defendant Doctor argued that he complied with the standard of care at all times. Defendant Hospital argued that any and all damages sustained by the baby were solely the result of negligence of the doctor.

Injuries/Damages

The child tests a full-scale IQ of 58. At the age of 4, he is unable to walk independently, exhibits severe cognitive deficits, extreme hyperactivity, and gross motor deficits consistent with diffuse brain damage.

Special Notes

The doctor agreed to pay $1 million, and the hospital settled for $300,000.


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