Mother wins lawsuit against hospital for daughter's birth injury

Occasionally, complications that arise during the delivery process can cause injuries, disfigurement or permanent disabilities. The baby’s size, position of the baby and a number of factors can lead to a difficult birth. Still, labor and delivery doctors are expected to adjust birthing plans as necessary in order to prevent birth injuries.

The mother of a 5-year-old girl who, despite multiple surgeries has to wear a brace on her deformed arm, claims that the delivery doctors at a Michigan hospital are to blame for the girls permanent disability. Her condition requires physical therapy and the girl continues to need help with everyday tasks. The jury sided with the mother’s claims and awarded her $12.9 million in damages; the award will probably be reduced to around $4 million because of a mandatory cap on non-economic damages and other factors. Still, it is a major victory for the family. According to the lawsuit, the baby’s arm became lodged on the pelvic bone and the nerves in the arm were torn when the doctors used too much force to try and dislodge the baby. The plaintiff’s attorney argued that the injury could have been prevented if doctors would have instead delivered the 8 pound 8 ounce baby via cesarean section. The hospital maintains that doctors followed proper protocol and the situation did not warrant an emergency cesarean section. A spokesman for the hospital suggested that the verdict will be appealed.

No amount of compensation can make up for the pain, suffering and mental anguish that is caused by birth injuries. It can help with medical costs such as long-term care and create a better quality of life for everyone in the family, however. If your newborn was injured because of a negligent doctor or nurse, you may want to speak with an attorney. 

Source:, “Genesee County jury awards nearly $13 million verdict in birth trauma lawsuit against Genesys,” Gary Ridley, Oct. 5, 2013.