Florida C-Section Malpractice Attorneys
According to the CDC, approximately one-third of all babies born each year in the U.S. are delivered by cesarean section (C-section). As with any surgical procedure, certain risks are involved with this type of delivery, but most doctors are well prepared to handle the risks and complications.
Unfortunately, however, serious problems can occur when doctors delay performing a C-section or make mistakes during or following the procedure. If a delivery is needlessly delayed, a baby can suffer an hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy (HIE) injury that can lead to brain damage or cerebral palsy. If a doctor is negligent during the delivery, the baby can suffer fetal lacerations, or the mother can suffer internal injuries.
Additionally, if women are given the wrong medication or the wrong dose of medication during labor or delivery, they can be injured; and if they aren’t monitored closely following delivery, they can develop problematic medical conditions, such serious infections, internal bleeding, and pulmonary embolisms.
If you or your child has been harmed by medical error or negligence related to a C-section delivery, you may be able to hold the doctor and/or labor and delivery team liable for their negligence and the harm it caused. By filing a Florida medical malpractice claim, you may be able to obtain substantial compensation for you pain, suffering, lost income, medical expenses and other damages resulting from C-section medical negligence.
The C-section malpractice attorneys at Paul Knopf Bigger are committed to pursuing and achieving justice for victims of negligent healthcare providers. We have successfully prosecuted numerous medical malpractice cases in Florida, winning multi-million-dollar settlements and awards for the families whom we have had the privilege of representing. We look forward to discussing your potential Florida medical malpractice claim and answering any questions you might have about the claims process.
Injuries Caused by Delayed C-Sections
A C-section delivery is usually recommended in cases when some aspect of the mother’s and/or baby’s condition could make vaginal delivery unsafe. This includes cases when:
- The baby is in a breech position before delivery.
- The baby is estimated to weigh more than 9 pounds.
- Labor is prolonged and difficult.
- The baby is showing signs of fetal distress.
- There is a decrease in blood supply to the placenta before delivery.
- The placenta is blocking the cervix (placenta previa) or has separated from the uterine wall (placenta abruption).
- The umbilical cord is wrapped around the baby’s neck.
- There are three or more babies.
- The baby has a known health problem, such as spina bifida.
- The mother had a previous C-section.
- The mother had previous uterine surgery.
- The mother has a known health problem, such as heart disease or high blood pressure, that could cause problems during labor.
- The mother has preeclampsia or eclampsia.
- The mother is HIV positive.
When women are in labor, they need to be monitored closely so that problems can be detected early and handled effectively. If the fetus exhibits signs of distress, or if the mother is exhibiting symptoms of placenta previa, placenta abruption, preeclampsia or other complications, an immediate C-section should be performed.
Most of the time, these emergency C-sections are successful, and both the mother and baby are safe. However, if the medical team administers the wrong medication or takes too long to identify a problem or too long to secure an operating room for the surgery, serious problems can occur, including:
- Lack of oxygen or blood flow to the baby, which can result in a hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy (HIE) injury that can cause brain damage or cerebral palsy.
- Increased risk of injury to the infant, including lacerations and fractures.
- Development delays.
- Infant or maternal death.
Injuries Caused by C-Section Errors
As with any surgical procedure, there are risks associated with a C-section delivery. However, when a doctor or other members of a labor and delivery team are negligent and make errors during or after the procedure, the baby and the mother can both suffer injuries.
Babies are especially vulnerable during a C-section, and doctors’ negligence can cause serious lacerations and even death. Lacerations on the face or head can be particularly dangerous, since a baby’s skull can be pierced, causing death.
Mothers can also be seriously injured due to medical negligence during or after a C-section. These injuries include:
- Injury to the Bladder – During a C-section delivery, a doctor may nick the mother’s bladder. This can lead to severe complications, such as loss of bladder control. If the bladder injury is not discovered and treated, the mother’s life could be endangered.
- Infection – Infections can occur at the mother’s wound site or internally. If internal infections are not identified and treated, they can spread throughout the body, causing serious complications and even death.
- Internal Bleeding – Postpartum hemorrhage, or internal bleeding, can occur after a C-section because of a nicked or damaged blood vessel. If the bleeding isn’t detected and stopped, it can lead to weakness, shock and even death.
- Pulmonary Embolism – Venous thromboembolism, blood clots that form in veins, can occur after surgery and travel to the lungs, where they block arteries and prevent the normal flow of blood. If undetected following a C-section, the pulmonary embolism can damage the lungs and other organs and, in some cases, be fatal.
Florida C-Section Malpractice Claims for Damages
In Florida, medical malpractice is defined as medical care that is below the accepted professional standard of care owed to patients. When healthcare professionals do not provide the same level of care a reasonably prudent provider of the same medical specialty would and thereby cause a patient to suffer serious injury or wrongful death, they may be held liable for the damages they caused with a medical malpractice lawsuit.
To have a valid C-section malpractice claim, you and your attorney have to be able to demonstrate that:
- The doctor and/or other healthcare providers had a duty to provide care for you that met the standard of care accepted by most obstetricians and labor and delivery teams.
- The doctor and/or other healthcare providers breached that duty of care.
- As a result of that breach (negligence), you or your baby were injured.
- The breach was the direct and proximate cause of your damages.
If you have a valid C-section malpractice claim, you may be able to obtain compensation for the following economic and non-economic damages:
- Physical and emotional pain and suffering
- Diminished capacity for enjoying life
- Loss of income
- Decreased earning capacity
- Medical expenses for hospitalization, additional surgery, office visits, medications, specialized medical equipment
- Therapy and rehabilitation costs
- Other damages recoverable under Florida law
Florida C-Section Malpractice Cases Require Legal Experience, Knowledge and Skill
Medical malpractice lawsuits to recover damages due to C-section negligence can be very complicated. To prove that an obstetrician’s and/or other healthcare providers’ care breached the accepted professional standard of care before, during or after a C-section delivery and that the breach seriously injured a patient requires a thorough investigation into all the details of the case, a comprehensive understanding of all the facts, high quality expert testimony and skill as a trial lawyer.
The Florida medical malpractice attorneys of Paul Knopf Bigger have the essential expertise, knowledge and skill you need and the track record of success you want. We work as a team, leveraging our combined knowledge, skills and resources to achieve justice and substantial compensation for victims of medical negligence in Florida. We have successfully represented clients from across the country, achieving many multi-million- dollar settlements and awards for people who have been seriously injured in Florida.
Florida’s Statute of Limitations for Medical Malpractice Claims
The statute of limitations for medical malpractice claims is two years from the date the malpractice occurred, was discovered or should have been discovered. The absolute deadline permissible for the discovery of malpractice is four years from the date the negligent incident occurred. For children, however, “Tony’s Law” extends this deadline and allows parents to file a medical malpractice claim until their child turns eight. Parents must be mindful, though, that cases in which they knew or should have known that the birth injury was most likely caused by negligent healthcare provider(s), the extended statute of limitations may not apply.
Experienced, Trusted Florida C-Section Malpractice Attorneys
Medical malpractice cases can be very complex, requiring the expertise of skilled trial attorneys and the resources of a successful law firm. The Paul Knopf Bigger attorneys specialize in medical malpractice cases and have been successful in obtaining many multi-million-dollar settlements and awards. We have the experience, skill and resources you need to win your Florida C-Section malpractice case.
Lawyers throughout the U.S. trust us to skillfully handle their clients’ complex medical malpractice claims in Florida. If you or a family member has been injured by a C-section error or negligence, we are the law firm you can trust to provide top quality representation, outstanding personal attention and excellent results.
To discuss your case with an experienced Florida medical malpractice attorney you can trust for excellence in the pursuit of justice, call us at 800-673-9585 or submit the “Free Case Evaluation” form on our website.