As you near your due date, you may find yourself navigating a roller-coaster of emotion. You're no doubt excited and eager to welcome your baby into your arms after carrying him or her for nine months or thereabouts. You may also feel a bit anxious and worried as to whether or not everything will go well during labor and delivery. Especially if you have given birth before, you may have a keen understanding of how important quality of care is regarding your and your child's safety.
Sadly, medical malpractice is a concerning issue in Indiana and all other states. Maternal and fetal injuries often occur when doctors or nurses neglect their duties. There are certain issues that increase the risk of birth injury. The average obstetrician should be able to recognize signs of maternal or fetal distress and take appropriate action to try to safely resolve the problem.
Issues that are cause for concern
Relaxing and having confidence are always beneficial as you prepare for childbirth. However, the following list shows issues that are legitimate causes for concern, which should prompt your doctor to make decisions to help you and your baby stay safe:
- Your prenatal visits should include measuring the size of your baby. If your doctor believes your child is too large to fit through the birth canal, he or she is likely to order a C-section to keep mom and baby safe.
- If your body goes into labor before your baby has reached 37 weeks' gestation, you are in a high-risk situation that requires specialized medical attention.
- Your baby may show signs that he or she is having a difficult time navigating the birth canal. When the birthing process fails to progress, it is known as dystocia and definitely warrants your doctor's immediate action to prevent injury.
- Numerous issues can cause dystocia, such as awkward fetal position in the birth canal, failure to dilate or lack of cervical effacement.
These and other issues would alert the average birthing medical team that you and your baby are not doing as well as expected in a healthy labor and delivery, which should prompt those in charge of your care to take immediate steps to rectify the situation, according to the highest level of accepted safety standards in the medical industry.
If medical negligence occurs
It is devastating to think that your child's birth might result in serious injury to him or her, or to you. Such grief would intensify if you were to later learn that the injury was preventable and was due to a doctor's or nurse's negligence. Indiana law allows parents to act on behalf of an injured child to seek legal accountability against those who caused the injury, by filing a medical malpractice claim in a civil court.