Injuries that occur while seeking healthcare can be physically debilitating and emotionally traumatic. If the victim is a child, the situation becomes even more heartbreaking. A birth injury can cause Erb’s palsy, which can affect an individual throughout life.
If your child suffered an injury during delivery and still has muscle weakness in their arm, limited range of motion, or partial or total paralysis, it might devastate you and your family. It may be difficult to see your child struggle to perform simple tasks and unable to participate in many everyday activities.
Your child may have undergone physical therapy and one or more surgeries that did not entirely correct the problem. In addition to the medical bills, your family might find it challenging to cope with the emotional effects of your child’s condition.
A Los Angeles Erb’s palsy lawyer might be able to help your family pursue justice and compensation for your child’s injuries. Pintas & Mullins Law Firm could file a medical malpractice lawsuit against the doctor who delivered your child and the hospital where the delivery took place. This suit would seek compensation for medical expenses and costs for your child’s future care, as well as for your child’s lost or diminished earning potential and pain and suffering. Call our offices at (800) 794-0444 to discuss your case with a member of our staff.
Explaining Erb’s Palsy
According to the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, Erb’s palsy is an injury to the brachial plexus. The brachial plexus is a network of nerves near the neck that pass from the spinal cord, between the vertebrae, and into the arm. Brachial plexus nerves allow a person to move and have sensation in the shoulder, arm, hand, and fingers.
Erb’s palsy is a type of brachial plexus injury that causes weakness in the arm and limited range of motion. The condition occurs in up to two out of every 1,000 births. According to the American Association of Neuromuscular & Electrodiagnostic Medicine, Erb’s palsy results from stretching that occurs when the head and shoulder move in opposite directions during delivery.
The brachial plexus might stretch if the baby is large or in a breech position, if the mother is small, or during prolonged labor. An injury might also occur if another complication arises that requires quick delivery of the baby. If the person delivering the baby uses forceps to pull them out of the birth canal, it might stretch one side of the neck. Erb’s palsy can occur in both vaginal and cesarean deliveries.
How Erb’s Palsy Affects a Child
A baby with Erb’s palsy may have weakness, loss of feeling, or partial or total paralysis in one arm. A child may have some ability to move the fingers but may be unable to move the shoulder.
Nerve issues can affect the growth of the arms. If your child has Erb’s palsy, they might have one arm that is smaller than the other. The difference could become more pronounced as your child gets older.
For a free legal consultation with a Erb’s Palsy Lawyer serving Los Angeles, call (800) 794-0444
Diagnosing and Treating Erb’s Palsy
A pediatrician may diagnose the condition based on a physical examination and imaging tests, such as an X-ray, ultrasound, or MRI. A doctor might also perform tests to check your baby’s nerve function.
In many cases, physical therapy can help infants with brachial plexus birth palsy regain feeling and the ability to move. A doctor might recommend that your baby undergo daily physical therapy to keep the joints and muscles healthy, preserve their range of motion, and prevent permanent stiffness. A doctor or physical therapist could show you how to perform exercises with your baby at home. According to Boston Children’s Hospital, physical therapy usually begins when an infant is three weeks old.
If physical therapy does not improve your baby’s condition, a physician might recommend surgery. After the procedure, if your child continues to experience some weakness in the shoulder, arm, or hand, additional surgeries could further improve their situation.
The costs for diagnostic tests, physical therapy, and surgeries can quickly add up. A Los Angeles Erb’s palsy lawyer may be able to help your family seek financial compensation for the expenses you have incurred for your child’s care so far and anticipated costs for future treatment. Contact Pintas & Mullins Law Firm today to learn more about how we can assist you.
Los Angeles Erb’s Palsy Lawyer Near Me (800) 794-0444
How an Attorney Can Help Your Family
You expect your physicians and other healthcare providers to meet a standard of care. You can then hold those who fail to meet that standard accountable through a medical malpractice lawsuit. A healthcare provider may be sued for “professional negligence” if that individual committed a “negligent act or omission” that resulted in harm to another in the rendering of professional services, according to CIV § 3333.2(c)(2).
A Los Angeles Erb’s palsy lawyer can file an insurance claim or personal injury lawsuit against the healthcare provider responsible for your child’s birth injury and the hospital where the delivery occurred.
The team at Pintas & Mullins Law Firm can investigate the circumstances that led to your baby’s injury and review medical records to understand the types of treatment your child has already received, their prognosis, and the forms of care that your child might require in the future. We can then provide your doctor the 90-day notice required by CCP § 364 of your intent to file a medical malpractice claim to seek fair compensation for your family. Since our firm operates on a contingency basis, we will not collect legal fees unless we obtain a settlement on your child’s behalf.
The law limits the amount of time victims of medical malpractice have to act. The statute of limitations for personal injuries involving a child is different than most cases. Under CCP § 340.5, the deadline to file a personal injury lawsuit on behalf of a child under the age of 6 who was a victim of medical malpractice is three years from the date of the wrongful act or the child’s eighth birthday, whichever is later. However, birth injuries fall under CCP § 340.4, which sets a different deadline. Managing these deadlines can prove tricky, so you might find working with a medical malpractice lawyer beneficial.
Contact Pintas & Mullins Law Firm today at (800) 794-0444 to discuss your case for free with a team member. We can explain which deadlines apply to your child’s injuries and get started working on your claim.