A spinal cord injury (SCI) can be a devastating diagnosis for any family. When it happens to a newborn, the effects can be challenging. While there are many potential causes of SCI in newborns, one that is often overlooked is delivery complications.
If you suspect that delivery complications may have caused your child’s SCI, it is crucial to speak with a medical professional as soon as possible.
How does a spinal cord injury happen during birth?
A spinal cord injury during birth is a rare but serious condition that can occur when the baby’s head and neck are forced into an abnormal position during delivery, such as a breech birth. The trauma may occur while the doctor is rotating and extracting the newborn or using a vacuum or forceps in the case of complicated deliveries. This can cause the spinal cord to become stretched or compressed, damaging the nerves.
Symptoms of an SCI in newborns may include such obvious signs as:
- Abnormal movements
- Loss of sensation
In some cases, newborns with SCIs may also experience difficulty breathing, feeding difficulties, and problems with temperature regulation. It’s important to get an evaluation by a spinal expert as soon as possible so that you understand exactly what the future holds.
When a doctor causes a spinal cord injury to a baby during delivery, the lifelong consequences – – emotionally, physically and financially can be severe. You have every right to ask for fair compensation if you believe your obstetrician or other medical professional was negligent.