Traumatic brain injury is one of the most common causes of infant deaths, which are usually the result of medical malpractice during deliveries. The results are usually life-threatening and oftentimes, fatal.
The Newborn Skull
This is understandable because the skull of a newborn baby is incredibly fragile. It comprises an occipital bone, two (2) frontal lobes and two (2) parietal bones. All of these are fused together via fibrous tissue-based ‘sutures’, allowing those plates to move and the skull to be flexible as the baby squeezes through the birth canal. The supple sutures also allow the skull to grow with the brain as the child ages.
Because the bones are not hardened, the brain is exposed and vulnerable to impact. If a fracture occurs, it can do long-lasting damage to a newborn and can even prove fatal. Mild fractures may not be apparent in the beginning. However, if your baby suffers from seizures, has difficulty sleeping and nursing, chances are he/she has a minor break in their skull.
Common Causes of Infant Skull Fractures
Most fractures newborns suffer from are usually caused by instruments used during delivery. This can happen during difficult or prolonged labor or due to complications (if the baby is unusually large or if it is a breach birth).
If used incorrectly or with force, instruments, such as forceps and vacuum extractors, can cause severe fractures in the baby’s skull. The instruments can be used to grip the baby’s head and pull him/her from the womb with excessive force, which can cause injuries. In this case, the doctor can be held liable, especially if he/she should have had the hindsight to recommend a C-section after determining the delivery would be difficult or high-risk.
On the other hand, an infant’s skull can also fracture due to natural causes. For example, if the baby’s head is caught on the mother’s pelvis or gets stuck in the birth canal, the resulting pressure can cause skull injuries as well. However, this may be an excuses a doctor may use to avoid a medical malpractice lawsuit.
If you need a medical malpractice attorney in Chicago, Waukegan, Libertyville, Woodstock or Antioch, IL, get in touch with Bob Edens at the Law Offices of Robert T. Edens today. With over two decades of experience representing devastated parents with newborns injured due to hospital negligence, he can ensure you get the justice you seek and the compensation you deserve and need.