Some circumstances can arise while a woman is giving birth that requires the use of forceps. Forceps are a tool that allows the doctor to grasp the baby better and use gentle force to help the birthing process.
Sadly, the incorrect use of forceps during birth can be dangerous to the baby and the mother. Medical professionals already understand that using forceps adds risk to a safe delivery. Improper use of forceps that causes injury to the baby or mother is medical malpractice. If you have been injured in this manner, it is crucial to speak with a New Jersey forceps injury attorney about your claim.
Forceps Use Requires Specialized Training
Medical professionals must be trained in the use of forceps for safe deliveries. The medical care provider must know exactly how to apply the forceps to the baby to not injure the infant or the mother. They must also know how much force to use to help assist the birth without causing harm.
In addition to knowing when to use forceps to assist with delivery, the medical provider must also know when it is dangerous to use this tool. The medical profession has stated that forceps should never be used under the following circumstances:
- Gestational age is 34 weeks or less
- Baby is too large to deliver (cephalopelvic disproportion)
- Breech, transverse, face or brow position
- Indications of certain bleeding or bone disorders
Different techniques can be used when applying forceps. A mid forceps delivery is risky. This places extreme pressure on the shoulders of the infant and can lead to shoulder dystocia. Shoulder dystocia often leads to brachial plexus injuries (Erb’s Palsy), which can affect the child for the rest of their lives.
A high forceps delivery is very dangerous to mother and infant. Today’s medical standards discourage the use of high forceps delivery. Medical practitioners who attempt this type of delivery can be held responsible for medical negligence by a birth injury lawyer in NJ.
Medical Professionals Understand The Risks of Forceps
Medical professionals understand that there is a risk when using forceps. Most doctors, midwives, or nurses who are actively taking part in the delivery try to avoid the use of forceps because of this risk. However, there are some professionals that use these devices to help “speed along” the delivery.
Mother and infant should be carefully monitored before birth to ensure that there is no risk to natural delivery. If any risk is indicated, or the potential for problems is high, the medical professionals should consider other options such as a c-section to ensure the safety of the mother and child.
Of course, not every problem can be anticipated or is obvious, even to the most experienced doctor. This is why forceps are available during the delivery to help if needed. However, the use of these tools should be the last resort and not the first choice.
If you or your baby has been injured during delivery by using forceps, you have a right to seek compensation for your injuries and losses. NJ medical malpractice claims can be challenging to prove, and it will be in your best interest to speak with a New Jersey injury attorney.