Shoulder Dystocia – Brachial Plexus Injury (Also known as Erb’s Palsy)
Shoulder Dystocia occurs when a baby’s shoulder becomes stuck behind the mother’s pubic bone during delivery. If this happens and your doctor and / or nurse(s) use too much force when trying to reposition your baby in the birth canal, there is a risk of stretching or tearing the nerves in your baby’s shoulder (the brachial plexus) and causing injury.
An injury to the brachial plexus (also known as Erb’s Palsy) can cause paralysis or loss of mobility and strength in your child’s arm and hand. The cause of this potentially life altering injury is recognizable and preventable and is often the result of medical negligence.
There are recognizable risk factors for shoulder dystocia and Erb’s Palsy, they include:
- Gestational diabetes
- Excessive weight gain during your pregnancy
- A large baby (macrosomia) more than 4000 grams
- A previous large baby
- Post term pregnancy
- Small pelvis
If your child suffers from either Cerebral Palsy or Erb’s Palsy, contact your Iowa Advocate at The James Law Firm, P.C. to learn about your rights and options. We have successfully represented children and families across Iowa, we may be able to help you.