When is a brain injury at birth medical malpractice? Brain injuries in newborns can lead to severe, lifelong consequences affecting their health, development, and enjoyment of life. Birth injuries can occur from naturally occurring complications or as a result of improper care by healthcare providers during labor and delivery. When the injury is a result of preventable medical errors, the healthcare provider may be held financially liable for medical negligence. Chicago-based attorney Patrick Salvi explains how birth brain injuries can happen, the legal elements required to prove medical negligence, and the types of damages injured victims and families can recover in Illinois.
Medical Malpractice > Obstetric Brain Injury > Chicago, Illinois
Patrick A. Salvi II is the Chicago Managing Partner at Salvi Schostok & Pritchard. He concentrates his practice in medical malpractice, personal injury, mass torts, and product liability.
Brain Injury at Birth: Causes and Types
Obstetric brain injuries can happen because of medical errors during pregnancy or childbirth or from naturally occuring complications. Brain injuries at birth can result from lack of oxygen (hypoxia), blood flow loss (ischemia), untreated infections in the mother or baby, head trauma, or birth complications. Common types of brain injuries at birth include Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy (HIE) caused by a lack of oxygen to the brain, Cerebral Palsy, intellectual and developmental disabilities, and motor disorders.
Birth Injury Medical Negligence or Malpractice Claims
To prove a claim of medical negligence or malpractice resulting in a brain injury at birth, the following elements must be shown:
Role of Experts
Medical malpractice cases involving birth injuries are complex, and experts are important to provide testimony of findings to support all elements of the negligence claim. Experts and specialists who may be consulted on obstetrical brain injury suits include:
Damages in Illinois
In Illinois, there are no caps or limits on how much a plaintiff can recover in medical malpractice claims. This includes economic and noneconomic damages. The types of damages recoverable in Illinois include: