Erb’s Palsy Birth Injury
About the Investigation:
Erb’s Palsy is a birth injury that can occur during delivery when the nerves connecting the baby’s shoulder, arm and hand are damaged. It results in loss of muscle function in the arm and shoulder that can be lifelong in some cases.
The brachial plexus is the network of motor and sensory nerves affected by Erb’s Palsy. This network connects the spinal cord with the shoulder, arm and hand. During childbirth, brachial plexus injuries can occur when a baby is too large to pass easily through the mother’s pelvis, or when the baby is in a breech position. Sometimes an emergency c-section is necessary to avoid straining or tearing those nerves from the spinal cord during a difficult vaginal delivery. If that call is not made in time and the baby’s neck or shoulders are stretched or compressed in the birth canal while attempting to pull the baby out vaginally, it can result in Erb’s Palsy — the name for the nerve damage arising from the brachial plexus injury.
Symptoms of Erb’s Palsy include:
• Bent or flexed arm held against the body
• Palm that points backward with fingers curled
• Weakness or paralysis of the shoulder, arm or elbow
Because neural networks are so complex, any nerve injury can cause damage that is permanent or difficult to completely rectify. Treating Erb’s Palsy involves therapy and sometimes surgery to repair damaged nerves or muscles.
Erb’s Palsy is categorized into four types:
• Neurapraxia – the nerve is stretched but not torn.
• Tear – the nerve is torn, but not pulled away from the spine.
• Neuroma – the torn nerve has healed and left scar tissue which impedes the signals from getting through to the nerves.
• Avulsion –the most serious type of Erb’s Palsy, when the nerve rips away from the spine.
The costs associated with these kinds of injuries can be significant. If your baby’s nerve injury was due to medical error or negligence, you should be compensated for that in order to help cover the costs of the care your child will need as a result.
How Can A Lawyer Help?
If your baby was diagnosed with Erb’s Palsy after birth and you feel that injury could have been avoided, please fill out the form on this page to have an attorney review what happened to you and determine whether you have a case. At Siri & Glimstad, there is never any cost upfront to you for our representation. Our attorneys will evaluate your case for free to see if you have a claim. We get paid only if we win for you!
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