A Shoulder Dystocia Lawsuit Can Be Filed Any Time before the Child Turns 20

If your child was injured by excessive force used by your doctor during labor, the cost of treating the child and coping with any resulting pain and suffering may be great.

Ashton J. Hyde and John Macfarlane in Salt Lake City, UT, have represented many families affected by shoulder dystocia, helping them secure the accountability and compensation they need. Our vast experience in birth injury cases makes us one of the leading medical malpractice firms in the country. To discuss your options, please contact us at our Salt Lake City injury law office and schedule a consultation. 

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Injuries can easily occur when medical technicians fail to act properly in cases of shoulder dystocia.

What Causes Shoulder Dystocia?

Shoulder dystocia (obstructed labor) occurs when an infant's shoulders cannot pass through the birth canal, and significant manipulation becomes necessary for delivery. There are a number of obstetrical maneuvers and labor positions that can facilitate delivery in the case of shoulder dystocia, and they are often successful. However, unnecessarily aggressive manipulation, carelessness, or neglect by the doctor can result in serious injury or death.

By using the advanced knowledge of our experts and specialists, we can uncover the details of your child's injury and determine if a suit should be filed. Unlike most medical malpractice cases that must be filed within two years of the injury, those involving children can be filed any time before the child turns 20. Younker Hyde MacFarlane

What Are the Risks?

It is common in medical malpractice cases involving shoulder dystocia for the doctor to pull too aggressively on the infant's head or arm during labor, tearing the brachial plexus (the network of nerves running from the spine, through the neck, and into the arm). The degrees of deformity in the arm that can result from shoulder dystocia range from mild to severe. A mild case may be characterized by a weak hand, a weak grip, or an inability to lift the hand about the shoulder. A severe case may be characterized by a withered hand, a deformed arm, a smaller-than-average arm, or loss of arm function.

Illustration of a doctor pulling baby from the birth canal by the head

Infant Hypoxia is another, although less common, risk of shoulder dystocia that is caused by the deprivation of oxygen via the umbilical cord. During obstructed labor, the umbilical cord can become trapped in the birth canal, cutting off the infant's oxygen supply. In the most devastating scenarios, shoulder dystocia can result in death.

The mother can also experience complications in cases of shoulder dystocia. Postpartum hemorrhage and third- or fourth-degree lacerations can result from an obstructed birth that was improperly diagnosed or treated.

Choosing Your Medical Malpractice Attorney

Norman Younker, of counsel, emphasizes the importance of selecting your attorney in medical malpractice case. Medical malpractice cases are very complicated and very expensive, so the malpractice attorney and law firm needs to have a proven track record and the financial where-with-all to handle your case.

Discuss Your Case with Us

Malpractice during shoulder dystocia can occur if the doctor fails to detect the potential for the obstruction, or fails to act appropriately when the problem arises. The medical and emotional consequences of such negligence are life-changing. If you and your family are suffering these consequences, you deserve to be compensated. Our team of attorneys at Younker Hyde Macfarlane, PLLC handles many cases of shoulder dystocia, and have a comprehensive understanding of how hospitals defend them. If you have questions about shoulder dystocia or medical malpractice, don't hesitate to contact us online or call us at (801) 335-6467 to set up a consultation.

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Younker Hyde Macfarlane, PLLC

Younker Hyde Macfarlane, PLLC

At Younker Hyde Macfarlane, PLLC, our attorneys have decades of combined experience in complex cases. We represent clients in all types of personal injury cases, with a special focus on medical malpractice claims. Our firm is associated with the following professional organizations:

  • Utah Bar Association
  • American Bar Association
  • Salt Lake County Bar Association
  • American Trial Lawyers Association

To schedule an appointment, please contact us online or call (801) 335-6467.

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"They were extremely knowledgeable, extremely helpful experts. The team helped me with all aspects of my case, including medical and financial, and understood that it affected more than me but also my family."

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