An infant brain damage settlement is a monetary award that parents (or guardians) receive on behalf of a child that was injured due to medical negligence. Brain damage has the potential to be devastating at any age, but when an infant is injured due to the negligence of entrusted medical caregivers, the situation is heartbreaking.
Brain damage in an infant may occur due simply to unforeseen complications, but too often it happens because someone made a mistake. The consequences can potentially be serious and may affect a child for decades to come. If this has happened to your child it is up to you to seek a settlement so that you have the money to provide your child with the best care throughout his life.
Brain Damage Can Happen During Child Birth
Infant brain damage is more common than people realize. Child birth is a difficult procedure, even with all the advances we have in modern medicine. Something can always go wrong and when a caregiver is careless or lazy, the risk that some complication will arise is even more serious. The most common cause of brain damage in an infant is asphyxiation during child birth.
There are many potential causes of asphyxiation, including illness in the mother that reduces the flow of oxygen to the baby. During labor and delivery, complications with the placenta or umbilical cord can restrict blood flow too. When the vulnerable brain of an infant is deprived of oxygen for any period of time it can cause damage, including cell death. The longer the duration of oxygen deprivation, the more severe the damage is likely to be.
In addition to asphyxiation, a child being born may also suffer brain damage because of how it is handled. A doctor may use a vacuum extractor or forceps to help aid in the delivery. These can be used safely, but they also have the potential to damage the head and brain of an infant if too much force is used. Brain damage can also be caused by untreated infections in the mother or by an misdiagnosed and untreated condition in the newborn, including jaundice.
Consequences of Infant Brain Damage
For many infants that suffer some degree of brain damage during labor and delivery, the consequences will be mild. Many will even recover completely. For the less fortunate that suffer more severe brain damage, the consequences have the potential to last a lifetime and may range from mild to severe. One possible consequence is that the baby will have cerebral palsy. This lifelong condition can cause a variety of symptoms including spastic muscle movements, difficulty walking, cognitive impairments, hearing and vision impairments, and even paralysis of parts of the body.
Even for those children whose brain damage does not lead to cerebral palsy, the consequences of this kind of injury can cause lifelong problems. A brain damaged baby may have developmental delays, learning disabilities, physical disabilities, behavioral problems, cognitive deficits, and other issues that may require lifelong treatment and care.
What an Infant Brain Damage Settlement Can Provide
A parent facing the prospect of raising a brain damaged child is in a difficult situation. You want the best for all your children, but now you have one with special needs. Giving this child the best will be more challenging, not the least of which will be expense: immediate treatments and procedures, ongoing therapies, adaptive equipment, medications, caregivers, and special education interventions.
What an infant brain damage settlement can provide is the money you need to provide all this care for your child. The ongoing complications of brain damage are expensive. Depending on the severity of the brain damage, your child may need care for decades to come.
Your child may never be fully independent. A settlement can provide money for current and future medical bills and care expenses, but it can also provide cash for lost wages if you can’t go back to work, as well as money that compensates you and your child for pain and suffering and emotional trauma.
How to Get Infant Brain Damage Settlement Money
To get a settlement you will have to file and win a lawsuit. This is not something any parent should tackle alone. What you need is a lawyer experienced in birth injuries and medical malpractice. This lawyer will have the expertise needed to file the lawsuit, investigate the circumstances of your child’s injury, build a strong case against the person or institution responsible, and represent your best interests in settlement agreements or in front of a jury if the suit goes to court.
In order to get the infant brain damage settlement that will provide for a better future for your child, you need a lawyer to help make your case against the responsible parties. You have a good chance of winning settlement money if you can prove that the person who made a mistake was responsible for your child’s medical care, that this person did make a mistake, and that the mistake directly led to the brain damage that your child is now suffering from.
An Infant Brain Damage Settlement Example
These settlements are real. Real parents win these settlements for their children and get justice for the harm caused to their children by trusted medical professionals. One example occurred in Grand Rapids, Michigan in 2010. Eliza Gort was born with jaundice, which must be treated. The medical team at Spectrum Health began treatment with a blood exchange transfusion. It was not done correctly and air got into the intravenous line. The result was that Eliza went into cardiac arrest and it took 40 minutes to resuscitate her. Her brain was restricted of oxygen for a period of time that caused severe brain damage.
The parents brought a lawsuit against Spectrum Health because they believed the damage caused to Eliza, who will live with the consequences of brain damage for the rest of her life, should have been prevented. An error was made that should not have been made. The lawsuit never went to trial and Spectrum Health agreed to an undisclosed settlement amount.
This is just one example of a successful infant brain damage settlement. Eliza’s family will now be able to provide her with the care she needs without worrying about money. Many other parents find themselves in similar situations and seeking a settlement is a common strategy to help provide care and treatment. If you have a child that was brain damaged during or shortly after birth, you may be able to make a case to prove that someone was negligent. As a result you could win your child a settlement that will make her life the best it can be.