Birth injuries occur all too often, and much of the time these devastating conditions are the fault of medical error by the labor and delivery team. Whether it be failure to respond to an irregular heartbeat or trauma caused by using forceps or other delivery-assisting devices, doctors continue to injure babies at an alarming rate.
In many cases, the damage is immediately apparent, such as if the child suffers significant brain damage or damage to vision or hearing. Doctors are able to monitor the child for these issues even before releasing them from the hospital. But in other cases it can take years for the effects of a birth injury to become clear.
Birth injury symptoms can become apparent at any age, and one of the best ways to recognize them is to pay attention to expected milestones. If a child walks, talks, eats, or crawls late, this can be a sign of damage to the brain that may have occurred during delivery.
Parents should be aware of behavioral difficulties as well, as in some cases brain damage can manifest in this way. Children who suffered damage to the parts of their brain related to executive function may have learning disabilities or behavioral difficulties. In some cases, these difficulties may not become apparent until the child is school-aged and begins to struggle in class, either with social skills or learning.
If you or someone you love is showing signs of a birth injury, even if the symptoms take years to discover, please consider consulting with an experienced attorney. Though determining exactly what occurred in the labor and delivery room becomes more difficult with time, holding the medical establishment responsible for its errors is important.