Pregnancy, labor, and delivery are high-risk times for both mother and baby. Obstetricians, gynecologists, and others who provide treatment to pregnant women face some of the highest risks of being sued for medical malpractice. When injuries occur during pregnancy or delivery, the consequences can be grave and the losses great. One recent tragic case showed how medical negligence can result in the loss of a young life and a large jury verdict for grieving family members left behind.
If you or someone you love is victimized by medical mistakes during pregnancy or when a baby is being delivered, it is important to get legal advice from an Atlanta birth injury attorney as soon as possible. Birth injuries can sometimes necessitate costly medical care for a child's entire life, and an attorney can help you to get the money you need to provide that care. If the mistakes result in the death of mother or baby, an attorney can also assist in these tragic situations.
Consequences of Medical Mistakes During Pregnancy
The Charlotte Observer reported on a recent tragedy which occurred because doctors made a mistake during pregnancy. An older mother was pregnant with a baby boy, and she was taking blood thinners because she had two blood clotting disorders. One of the disorders, Factor V Leiden, was especially likely to cause clots during pregnancy.
When she was around 35 weeks pregnant, she began to experience a throbbing pain in her side. Although she had been put on antibiotics because of bronchitis and had been coughing, she knew the pain was too severe. She went to the emergency room at around 10 PM on a Sunday night for treatment.
Initially, there was confusion about whether an ER physician should see the mother or whether she should be sent to labor and delivery for monitoring. Ultimately, she was seen by an ER doctor who diagnosed gallstones and a hematoma. Unfortunately, instead of conducting further ultrasounds to determine the size of the hematoma and instead of monitoring her because she was in the midst of a high-risk pregnancy, they sent her home with pain pills.
Exhausted from being at the hospital until around 5 AM, the mother fell asleep and missed her ob/gyn appointment. The next day, her concerned step daughter went over to her house when she had not been heard from. The step daughter discovered the hematoma had grown and the mother had lost 50 percent of her blood flow. She was disoriented and had to be taken to the hospital.
Tragically, because of lack of blood flow and loss of oxygen, the baby was dead. The mother went through an eight hour labor. She subsequently sued the treating physician in the ER as well as the medical group which the physician was employed by. The hospital was not sued.
While most malpractice cases settle, this one did not and the mother ended up going to court to prove she was entitled to compensation because of the medical mistake which caused her baby's death. The jury agreed medical negligence was the cause, and awarded $2.5 million in compensation.
Cases like this one can be complicated, and tragic for families who experience unspeakable loss. A knowledgeable and compassionate attorney can provide invaluable assistance.
The Atlanta medical malpractice lawyers at Van Sant Law, LLC can represent patients or their families after a medical mistake. Call today at 404-991-5950 or contact us online to schedule your free consultation.