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Birth injuries and birth defects differ greatly

Knowing that something is wrong with your newborn isn't a feeling that any parent wants to experience. When the problem is one that could have been prevented, parents might become livid.

It is imperative that you keep your wits if this happens. Your top priority has to be your new baby. As difficult as it might be, you can't just come unglued and hope that everything starts to get better. You need to take a proactive stand. Here are some points to know about birth injuries and birth defects.

Birth injury

A birth injury happens to the baby during the birth itself. This doesn't mean that it could have been prevented. However, there are some birth injuries that could have been prevented with proper monitoring and reactions when potential problems are noted.

One example of a birth injury is Erb's palsy, which is associated with shoulder dystocia. In this case, the doctor might have been able to prevent Erb's palsy by helping the baby to complete the delivery. In fact, assisting the baby's delivery is always advisable when shoulder dystocia is noted since it is unlikely that the baby would be able to be born without it.

Birth defect

A birth defect happened during fetal development. In many cases, birth defects are natural and nothing can be done to prevent them. There are some instances in which a birth defect does have external causes, such as the women being prescribed a medication that isn't considered safe during pregnancy.

One drug that is associated with birth defects is Accutane. A doctor who knows that a woman is pregnant shouldn't prescribe this drug to her. In fact, pregnancy testing prior to prescribing this medication to a woman who might become pregnant is advised.

The presence of negligence

Whether the baby's birth defect or birth injury is something for which parents can seek compensation depends on the circumstances surrounding the incident. One thing that must be present is negligence or malpractice on behalf of the medical team caring for the woman.

Compensation could help parents ensure that the baby has the lifelong care he or she needs. It could also help to cover other expenses, such as time parents have to miss from work or the cost of making modifications to the home. Because these cases have a statute of limitations, it is imperative that the parents explore their options quickly.

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