Pregnancy malpractice is a form of medical malpractice that is caused by negligence in the care of a pregnant woman. There are many serious conditions that can arise during pregnancy that can affect the health and lives of both the mother and the baby. The OBGYN or other health practitioner, such as a nurse midwife, who is treating the pregnant woman must monitor both the mother and the baby for serious medical conditions. If there is an injury to either party due to the negligence of a heath provider, or a serious medical condition went undiagnosed or unmonitored, it could be a case of pregnancy malpractice.
One of the most serious, and common, health complications that can arise during pregnancy is pre-eclampsia. It may occur often, but it is a serious condition that can be detected by assessing symptoms such as high blood pressure in the pregnant woman. This condition must be monitored closely to prevent the mother from suffering from seizures, strokes or even dying from the condition. It can affect the mother during the pregnancy or in the weeks after the birth. Women who have a seizure or stroke shortly after giving birth may have pre-eclampsia. If the warning signs of the condition were there and the medical provider did not diagnose and monitor it, it may be a case of medical malpractice.
Another serious condition that many women develop is gestational diabetes. This is diabetes that develops during pregnancy, and it usually goes away after the birth. This condition can make both the pregnancy and the birth more complicated. It often leads to a larger baby that can be harder to deliver. A larger baby can mean a complicated labor and a delivery that can result in an injury to the baby.
About 18 percent of pregnant women develop gestational diabetes. This high statistic means that every medical practitioner who treats pregnant women should be watching for signs of the condition and ensuring that testing is done. When there is no testing done or the signs of this condition are ignored, a case of this serious condition can go undiagnosed. This puts both the mother and the baby at risk of health complications and injuries. A small number of women with gestational diabetes will develop a permanent case of diabetes after giving birth, and that condition also must be monitored to prevent other health complications.
When a woman who has Rh-negative blood conceives a baby with a man with Rh-positive blood, this creates a fetus that has Rh-positive blood. This creates an incompatibility between the mother’s blood and the baby’s blood. This can lead to problems with the baby, especially in subsequent pregnancies, but those can be avoided with the proper care. When an RH incompatibility is detected, the health care provided must provide injections to keep the mother’s body from making antibodies that will attack the baby’s blood. If this condition is ignored, serious complications can arise. This can lead to a serious case of jaundice in a newborn or even to the death of the fetus. If the incompatibility was not diagnosed or treated, the situation may be medical malpractice.
Anemia During Pregnancy
Anemia is a common condition, and many women develop it during pregnancy. It is a condition that medical providers should routinely test pregnant women for, and it should be treated if it is discovered. Anemia may be mild in a pregnant woman and require nothing more than extra iron supplements to get more iron into the mother’s blood to allow her body to have the right amount of healthy red blood cells. However, when this condition is untreated, it can cause health complications in both the mother and the baby. Dizziness can lead to injuries, and other symptoms can disrupt life and lead to everything from fatigue to an irregular heartbeat.
In rare cases, the pregnant woman requires a blood transfusion to treat the condition. If anemia is not tested for or is not treated appropriately, unnecessary health complications can arise. Malpractice can occur when the condition is left without treatment or is never diagnosed.
When a woman is pregnant, her health must be monitored regularly, and all signs of serious conditions should be investigated. When these precautions are not taken, the woman and her baby may suffer needlessly.