Shoulder Dystocia

Shoulder dystocia is an obstetric emergency with the potential to severely injure both mother and child. A shoulder dystocia happens when the baby’s shoulder becomes stuck behind the mother’s pelvic bone during delivery; most shoulder dystocia situations are diagnosed when the baby’s head delivers but the shoulders do not follow. If shoulder dystocia occurs, any amount of traction placed on the baby’s head can cause severe nerve injury. Shoulder dystocia is one of the most difficult complications that can occur during delivery, because a shoulder dystocia situation carries such high risk for complications.

Among the most common (and serious) shoulder dystocia injuries is a form of nerve damage known as Erb’s Palsy. This results when a shoulder dystocia condition is mishandled, resulting in damage to the nerves connecting the neck and arm. Shoulder dystocia injuries range from the stretching of the nerve tissue to a complete rupture, causing the shoulder dystocia victim to suffer permanent paralysis of the arm. A properly trained obstetrician will identify any shoulder dystocia risks and take steps to avoid injury during the delivery. Increased risks of shoulder dystocia are linked to high birth-weight babies, obese mothers, and a long second stage of labor. Scheduling a caesarean section for high-risk mothers can prevent shoulder dystocia, and if shoulder dystocia occurs during birth, sixteen different maneuvers can free the trapped shoulder, ensuring safe delivery. Shoulder dystocia is a serious situation, but does not have to result in injury.

If a shoulder dystocia injury has occurred to you or a loved one, and you feel that the shoulder dystocia was improperly handled, you may wish to speak to a lawyer. Attorneys experienced in shoulder dystocia cases can help you understand your rights and decide if you have a valid case.

The Alexander Law Firm will thoroughly, completely, and competently investigate the facts and circumstances surrounding your case. We believe that time is of the essence to prevent evidence from being lost or destroyed; therefore, we immediately begin working on your case. At the Alexander Law Firm, initial consultations are free. You owe it to yourself to know your rights!

If your loved one has received an injury resulting in shoulder dystocia or death, please call 1-800-350-5110, then press 0 to speak with one of our injury attorneys.