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Labor & Delivery Complications

Experienced Arizona Birth Injury Attorneys

No parent wants to hear that their child has suffered a serious birth injury, and few are prepared for the financial and emotional repercussions that follow.

Injuries sustained before, during, and after birth may result in brain damage, nerve damage, severe bruising, bone fractures, or other serious grievances. In many cases, these injuries result in lasting or long-term damage and can seriously alter your baby’s day-to-day life. If you or your child was injured during labor or delivery, find out if you are eligible for compensation.

At Cullan & Cullan, we are dedicated to helping individuals and families who have suffered serious birth injuries. Our legal team is comfortable handling several different types of personal injury cases because we are also certified medical doctors and we know precisely what is at stake for your child. We understand how confusing birth injuries can be, which is why we want to help you identify the medical problem and create a legal plan that best represents your child’s interests.

Ready to take action? Call (602) 900-9483 to discuss your child’s condition and discover what your legal options may be.

Common Types of Labor & Delivery Complications

During the labor process, the mother’s body is under an extreme amount of stress, which is why it is absolutely crucial to monitor her vitals and those of her baby.

When the pregnant mother is poorly cared for, or if healthcare professionals make any mistakes, the mother and baby could face serious complications. In some cases, the doctor may fail to perform a Cesarean section if the baby is in distress or if the mother’s labor is not progressing, which could ultimately deprive the baby of oxygen and cause brain damage. These types of errors also put the mother in serious danger and increase her risk of hemorrhage and other life-threatening complications.

Other common types of labor and delivery complications include:

  • Preterm Labor: When labor begins before 37 weeks of pregnancy, increasing the risk of complications for the baby.
  • Prolonged Labor: Labor that lasts longer than usual, which can lead to exhaustion, fetal distress, and may require interventions like assisted delivery (forceps or vacuum extraction) or cesarean section.
  • Breech Birth: When the baby is positioned bottom or feet first instead of head first, which can complicate delivery and increase the risk of birth injuries.
  • Placenta Previa: A condition where the placenta partially or completely covers the cervix, potentially causing bleeding during pregnancy or labor.
  • Uterine Rupture: A tear in the uterus, which can lead to severe bleeding and endanger both mother and baby.
  • Umbilical Cord Problems: Issues such as cord prolapse (when the cord slips through the cervix before the baby) or cord compression (when the cord is squeezed during delivery), which can affect the baby's oxygen supply.
  • Preeclampsia: A condition characterized by high blood pressure and signs of damage to another organ system, often the kidneys, that can develop after 20 weeks of pregnancy.
  • Gestational Diabetes: Diabetes that develops during pregnancy and can increase the risk of complications during delivery if not managed properly.
  • Postpartum Hemorrhage: Excessive bleeding following childbirth, which can be caused by various factors such as uterine atony (lack of uterine muscle tone).
  • Infection: Infections that can occur during or after childbirth, such as chorioamnionitis (infection of the fetal membranes) or endometritis (infection of the uterus).

When any of these complications occur, it is the responsibility of the doctor, nurse, or other attending healthcare professionals to identify and treat the issue. Unfortunately, if the complications are not properly handled, the mother and baby could be seriously injured.

Common Causes of Labor & Delivery Issues

Labor and delivery complications involving medical malpractice can occur when healthcare providers fail to meet the standard of care expected in their profession, resulting in harm to the mother or baby.

Some common causes of labor and delivery complications related to medical malpractice include:

  • Failure to Diagnose or Respond to Fetal Distress: Healthcare providers must monitor fetal heart rate and other signs of distress during labor. Failure to recognize signs of fetal distress, such as abnormal heart rate patterns indicating lack of oxygen, can delay necessary interventions like emergency cesarean section, leading to brain damage or even death of the baby.
  • Delay in Performing a Cesarean Section: In cases where a cesarean section (C-section) is medically indicated due to fetal distress, failure to perform the surgery promptly can result in serious complications such as birth asphyxia, brain damage, or stillbirth.
  • Improper Use of Assisted Delivery Techniques: Techniques like forceps or vacuum extraction are used to assist in vaginal delivery. Improper application of these tools can cause injuries to the baby, such as skull fractures, nerve damage, or facial injuries.
  • Medication Errors: Administration of incorrect medications or improper dosages during labor can lead to complications such as excessive bleeding, adverse reactions, or anesthesia-related issues for the mother.
  • Negligent Management of Labor: This includes failing to properly monitor the progress of labor, misinterpreting labor signs, or not recognizing complications like uterine rupture or placental abruption in a timely manner.
  • Inadequate Communication or Informed Consent: Healthcare providers must communicate effectively with patients regarding treatment options, risks, and alternatives. Failure to obtain informed consent for procedures or interventions can lead to legal and ethical issues.
  • Postpartum Complications: Negligence in postpartum care, such as failure to recognize or treat postpartum hemorrhage, infections, or other complications promptly, can lead to serious harm or death of the mother.
  • Errors in Neonatal Care: Inadequate neonatal resuscitation techniques or failures in providing proper care immediately after birth can result in brain injuries or other permanent disabilities in newborns.
  • Lack of Adequate Staffing or Supervision: Understaffing or insufficient supervision of medical personnel during labor and delivery can contribute to errors and delays in critical care.
  • Failure to Address Maternal Health Conditions: In cases where the mother has pre-existing conditions like gestational diabetes or hypertension, failure to manage these conditions appropriately during pregnancy and labor can lead to complications for both mother and baby.

Who May Be Liable?

The birthing process can be extremely dangerous when doctors or nurses are inexperienced or underqualified, or if the healthcare facility is ill-equipped to handle potential complications. If the mother experiences a complication and the doctor fails to diagnose or treat her in time, the doctor may be liable for the resulting damage.

Likewise, if a nurse fails to monitor the patient or handles the baby incorrectly, they may be responsible for the resulting birth injuries. In many cases, the hospital can be found liable for their employees’ negligence, or for failing to uphold safe, lawful medical procedures.

Let Our Dedicated Birth Injury Attorneys Help You

If you or your child suffered a labor or delivery injury in Arizona, our firm wants to help. We have recovered more than $350 million on behalf of our clients and we are dedicated to providing each and every case with the attention it requires. Our team has a history of record-setting verdicts and we want to help ensure that you and your family obtain the justice you deserve.

Contact Cullan & Cullan today to discuss your case with our Phoenix birth injury lawyers.

Record SettingVerdicts

View All Results
  • $26.1 Million

    Medical Malpractice

    Cullan & Cullan has set a state record in Nebraska with a $26.1 million medical malpractice jury award.

  • $25.4 Million

    Medical Malpractice

    Cullan & Cullan, Doctors Practicing Law, won a record-setting $25.4 million jury verdict for a family injured by medical negligence during labor and delivery.

  • $19 Million

    Truck Accident

    Negligent truck driver made a right-hand turn into plaintiff’s vehicle, causing fractured vertebra and partial paralysis. Defendant alleged plaintiff was trying to pass him on the shoulder. The insurance company offered zero before trial.



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  • "We knew these would be lifelong issues for our son. You have to advocate for your kids because no one else will do it. Cullan & Cullan knew what was going on and we knew they would be successful in helping us."
  • "If your child is damaged or you think your child is damaged, you should seek a lawyer. Having a doctor-lawyer on my side really gave me hope."
  • "My child had permanent paralysis in her left arm and no one gave us a straight answer on how bad it actually was. We needed lawyers who understood the medical side of this case and hiring the Cullan brothers gave us the attention we needed."
  • "Joe and Pat came to meet me helped me fight my case. I was who they cared about and I felt so important with the Cullan brothers."
  • "For anybody who's been in an accident and suffered a catastrophic injury, Dr. Sam is the best person you could possibly call to help. Not only is he someone who is knowledgeable and very friendly, he's also a humble person - someone who will hold your hand and guide you through the process as he did with me."
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