There is nothing, in all of existence, quite like giving birth to a child. Nothing even comes close to the overwhelming emotional, mental, spiritual, and physical waves that hit you throughout the process. Having a newborn is supposed to be a time where everyone else around you, and the world outside, slows down or stops, leaving just you, your little one, and those you permit in your home to approach. This is supposed to be a time for bonding with your new family member, getting to know them, letting them get to know you, letting them feel out the world for the first time.
If you or your infant was injured due to malpractice during birth, those early postpartum days could feel drastically different. You have enough to deal with without tossing in an injury. This being said, it does happen, and the following will explore what you need to keep in mind if you are considering taking legal action against the healthcare provider or the healthcare institution you were in when the injury occurred.
Before Anything Else: Take Care of Yourself
Of course, it is important to note right up front that legal proceedings can produce stress or unease. If you are having difficulty during postpartum because of the injury, anxiety related to the case, or any other reason at all (even if it seems irrelevant), speak to someone you trust. If you cannot find anyone to reach out to, please call a hotline.
Sometimes just being heard is enough to ease some of the difficulty. Other times, support and help are needed to get through postpartum. Every birth, every child, and every mother is different, if you feel overwhelmed, there is no shame in admitting that you need an extra pair of hands. Postpartum depression and postpartum psychosis are real things that should never be ignored. Speak to the people in your life, you might be surprised to discover how not alone you are and how many people have gone through something similar.
Contact An Attorney As Soon As You Are Able
When taking legal action, you’ll need an attorney at your side explaining to you the system you find yourself in and the steps that need to be taken in the order they need to be taken. The law is a complicated thing, and it requires many years of study and even more years of practice to understand. You’ll want to do this sooner rather than later, as many states have clauses regarding how long after an injury is sustained, a charge can be put forward.
When choosing an attorney, you’re going to want to look for someone who specializes in this type of law (medical malpractice related to birth) and who works in the state where the injury occurred. This is because the law differs from state to state and a lawyer’s study and practice tend to be hyper-specialized.
How Do You Know If Your Injury Counts As Malpractice?
Every situation is, of course, a little different, meaning you’ll need to speak to an attorney to understand how your particular circumstances relating to the law. This being said, experts at https://www.hamparyan.com/san-diego-birth-injury-attorney/ have outlined some of the more common types of birth-related preventable injuries. If you’re experiencing one or more of the following, you may have a case:
- Vaginal lacerations
- Abnormal uterine bleeding
- Broken bones
- Infection in the reproductive system
- Cesarean section injuries
Likewise, if your little one is has experienced one of the following, you might also have a case for compensation:
- Spinal cord problems
- Anoxia (lack of oxygen to organs)
- Shoulder dystocia
- Cerebral palsy
- Cranial hemorrhage
- Erb’s palsy
- Fractures or broken bones
Of course, the above lists are nowhere near exhaustive. Nor do the things mentioned above automatically mean your situation meets the requirements for a legal proceeding. Make sure to speak to a legal professional about your particular circumstances.
Stay Off Social Media
As you seek out an attorney and follow their instructions in the legal proceedings, it is important that you are wary of your social media presence. Social media posts, comments, likes, and shares can all be brought forward in a case. It can be hard to avoid, particularly at a time when social interaction is so very important (for baby and you), but it is far too easy to spin social media activity into something you don’t want. Beyond this, during emotional times, it can be hard not to get caught up in online research and political movements related to your situation. You can do all of these things, just not right away.
With the above information in mind, you should have a better understanding of how to proceed if you’re looking into taking legal action due to injuries sustained during birth. As will all legal information available online, make sure to speak to an attorney about your specific case to understand what you need to be doing.