Wrongful Death: Newborn Fatalities

For any parent, the loss of their newborn child may be one of the most challenging and emotionally turbulent experiences they will endure in their lifetime. Sometimes, a doctor or other medical staff make a mistake, commit an oversight or act carelessly during either the pregnancy or birth process. Many parents opt to file a lawsuit against the party or company, in attempt to seek justice for the heartbreaking event. Below we cover the three most common birth injuries that can result in a newborn fatality.

#1 Oxygen Deprivation (Hypoxia)

Oxygen deprivation can be fatal for an infant, particularly when he or she is still in the womb. Doctors and nurses must be alert and constantly monitoring for fetal distress and/or insufficient oxygen. Hypoxia happens most often from labor stress, such as an umbilical cord being wrapped around the neck, or issues arising with the placenta.

#2 Reduced Blood Flow

In order to live, babies need a sufficient amount of blood flow to their brain and organs. Blood flow permits the receival of oxygen and other life-sustaining substances. If the blood flow is reduced for too long of a period, the infant’s brain, heart and organs cannot properly function. If not responded to right away, the organs can begin to shut down completely.

#3 Traumatic Delivery Injuries

Difficult deliveries can result in the wrongful death of infants. A doctor can be caught off guard if there is sudden fetal distress. Problems can quickly arise while the infant is in the birth canal and a doctor may make errors hastily. Obstetricians, nurses and medical staff should be trained to respond with a calm yet urgent manner to birth emergencies. A doctor may improperly use forceps or a vacuum extractor during the birth process, in an attempt to get the baby out as soon as possible. Deep lacerations or skull trauma can be severe enough to cause an infant fatality.

Other Conditions

Some other common wrongful death newborn fatalities include antepartum hemorrhage, eclampsia, placenta previa, uterine rupture, placental abruption, newborn jaundice that is untreated, kernicterus or spinal cord damage. In many of these scenarios, the deaths could have been prevented if the doctor or hospital staff had responded accurately and promptly. Even clerical, pharmacist or medical equipment operators can make deadly mistakes.

Legal Assistance

In many cases, parents choose to file a lawsuit against the doctor, hospital staff or facility for the wrongful death of their newborn baby. Parents may find some healing in holding the parties responsible for their actions, in hopes they never commit such negligence again. A doctor may even be at risk for losing the right to practice medicine if a wrongful death case proves legitimate. Due to the sensitive nature of an infant’s wrongful death, finding an experienced and empathetic attorney such as the wrongful death lawyer Orlando, Fl locals trust may be the best decision. Most law offices offer a free appointment, so an attorney can go over the details of your case further. This can help you decide if your case is strong enough to withstand in court.  


Thanks to authors at Needle Ellenberg P.A. for their insight into Personal Injury Law.