Ann Arbor Birth Injury Lawyers
Representing Victims of Medical Malpractice in Ann Arbor
Ann Arbor hospitals are known for their expertly-trained staff and dedication to patients. However, the medical professionals working at these facilities may still make mistakes. Unfortunately, in chases that involve fragile newborn children, these errors may lead to serious complications and lasting damage. If you or a loved one suffered a birth injury at an Ann Arbor hospital, a birth injury attorney can help you pursue the justice you and your family deserve.
Reiter & Walsh ABC Law Centers is one of the only law firms in the world that exclusively takes birth injury cases. Our unique focus means that we have a thorough knowledge of the complex medical aspects of birth trauma cases. Our focus also allows us to work with leading experts, top medical specialists and life-planning professionals through every step of a birth injury case. Partners Jesse Reiter and Rebecca Walsh are currently recognized as two of the best medical malpractice lawyers in America by U.S. News and World Report. If your child experienced a birth injury, contact the Ann Arbor birth injury attorneys at Reiter & Walsh today at 888-419-2229.
Ann Arbor Hospitals
Ann Arbor is home to several excellent hospitals that provide top-notch care to patients, including the University of Michigan Hospital, St. Joseph Mercy Hospital, Chelsea Community Hospital and Providence Park Hospital.
C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital – also in Ann Arbor – is a pediatric hospital in the University of Michigan Health System. This facility is the state’s only children’s hospital ranked nationally in all ten specialties. As a firm focused on neonatal and pediatric health, Reiter & Walsh appreciates C.S. Mott’s mission and has donated nearly $10,000 to support the hospital.
Ann Arbor Universities and Research Centers
Ann Arbor is home to several notable universities and research centers, including the University of Michigan. The University of Michigan is the state’s oldest university, founded in 1817 before the Michigan Territory even became a state. The Ann Arbor campus includes 584 major buildings spread out over 781 acres. It is considered one of the foremost research universities in the country and has distinguished programs in STEM, business, medicine, law, and more.
This university has more than 500,000 living alumni, including our own Jesse Reiter, who earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science from the University. Mr. Reiter continues to Go Blue, supporting the Wolverines’ Political Science and Athletic departments every year. He is also a lifetime member of the University of Michigan Alumni Association.
Other universities and colleges in the area include Eastern Michigan University, Washtenaw Community College, Concordia University and Cleary University.
Ann Arbor Law Schools
Law schools in the area include the University of Michigan Law School and Thomas M. Cooley Law School, an independent non-profit institution affiliated with Western Michigan University. One of our esteemed attorneys, Jennifer Secorski, graduated from Cooley Law School in 2013 with her Juris Doctor, after completing her accounting degree at the University of Michigan, Dearborn.
Ann Arbor Legal Resources
Plaintiffs filing birth injury cases in Ann Arbor may pursue justice in the Eastern District of Michigan US District Court. Rebecca Walsh and many of our other attorneys are admitted to practice in this court.
Ann Arbor Birth Injuries
A number of obstetrical complications, medical mistakes, and scenarios can cause birth injuries if not handled properly. In this section, our attorneys list a few of the more common injuries and medical mistakes they handle.
- Nuchal cord: This occurs when the umbilical cord is in a knot around the baby’s neck. This can cause the cord to be occluded, which significantly decreases the flow of oxygen-rich blood to the baby. In addition, the knot can be so tight around the neck it impinges on the baby’s neck vessels, leading to decreased oxygen flow to the brain.
- Umbilical cord prolapse: This occurs when the cord travels down the birth canal before the baby. When this happens, the baby’s body and mother’s pelvis push on the cord. The pressure on the cord can cause blood flow to the baby to slow down or stop. Cord prolapse is an obstetrical emergency, and when it happens, the baby must be delivered immediately (usually by C-section).
- Placental abruption: This occurs when the placenta separates from the uterus, which can cause bleeding in the mother and a decreased supply of oxygen-rich blood to the baby. It also can cause the placenta (and umbilical cord) to be cut off from the mother’s blood supply, either partially or completely.
- Preeclampsia: This is when the mother has high blood pressure (hypertension). When hypertension occurs, blood flow to the baby can decrease. There are a number of ways this can happen. High blood pressure can cause damage to or constriction of the vessels in the placenta. When this happens, there is a decreased flow of oxygen-rich blood to the baby through the placenta and umbilical cord.
- Post-term pregnancy: When a baby is in the womb for longer than 37 weeks, postmaturity syndrome may occur. This results from the placenta beginning to deteriorate after week 37, resulting in uterine and placental insufficiency. This means that it may not be able to supply adequate oxygen-rich blood to the baby.
- Chorioamnionitis and villitis: Chorioamnionitis is infection and inflammation of the placenta and fetal membranes. Villitis is infection and inflammation of the part of the placenta that is involved in gas and nutrient exchange, and is associated with chronic chorioamnionitis. These conditions can cause premature rupture of the membranes (PROM), which can cause serious problems for the baby, including premature birth and being born before the lungs are fully developed, which can cause oxygen deprivation.
- Meconium Aspiration Syndrome (MAS): This is when the baby breathes meconium into the lungs around the time of birth. Meconium is a mixture of amniotic fluid and the baby’s first stool. When a baby inhales meconium, it can result in severe respiratory distress and breathing problems after birth, which can cause oxygen deprivation.
- Macrosomia (large baby): If a mother has gestational diabetes, she has an increased chance of having a macrosomic (very large) baby. Macrosomic babies are more susceptible to traumatic birth, which can include the use of forceps and vacuum extractors. Trauma can cause hemorrhages/brain bleeds, which can cause a lack of oxygen in the brain. In addition, prolonged labor associated with macrosomia and CPD also increases the chance of oxygen deprivation.
- Cephalopelvic disproportion (CPD): CPD occurs when the baby is too large to fit through the mother’s pelvis due to large fetal size and/or a small maternal pelvis.
- Uterine rupture: This is when the uterus (womb) tears open, potentially expelling the unborn baby out of the womb and into the mother’s abdomen. When the uterus tears, the mother may lose a great deal of blood, which deprives the baby of oxygen-rich blood and puts both mother and child at risk. Tthe rupture can also cause the placenta and cord to be cut off from circulation, which also deprives the baby of oxygen. Women who have a vaginal birth after C-section (VBAC) are at an increased risk of uterine rupture.
- Face presentation and breech birth: When a baby is not in the normal position (top of the head exiting the birth canal first), prolonged labor, head trauma and umbilical cord prolapse can occur. These complications can cause oxygen deprivation in the baby’s brain. In addition, babies with face presentation can suffer from swelling and fluid buildup in their upper airways, which can cause respiratory distress and oxygen deprivation.
- Delayed emergency C-section: Research shows that when the decision to perform a C-section is made, the baby should be delivered in 18 minutes or less, in most cases. Experts also agree that in other instances, such as a cord prolapse, the baby should be delivered much sooner. Often, physicians spend too much time trying to deliver a baby vaginally, and they do not move on to a C-section quickly enough, or they lack the skill or necessary equipment to promptly perform a C-section. When an indicated C-section is not performed quickly enough, the baby is often left in oxygen-depriving conditions for far too long.
- Severe maternal hypotension (very low blood pressure): When a mother’s blood pressure is low, the blood flowing from her through the placenta and umbilical cord to the baby may be insufficient. This can deprive the baby of oxygen-rich blood.
- Intracranial and intraventricular hemorrhage: Hemorrhages (brain bleeds) can occur when there is trauma to the baby’s head. This can happen during labor and delivery, especially if delivery instruments (such as forceps and vacuum extractors) are used or the baby’s birth position (face presentation, breech birth) is mismanaged. Brain bleeds cause decreased blood flow and oxygen in the brain.
- Traumatic delivery can occur when forceps or vacuum extractors are used or when shoulder dystocia (where the shoulder is trapped behind the mother’s pelvis) occurs. Trauma can cause brain bleeds, which in turn cause oxygen deprivation. Shoulder dystocia can also cause trauma to the head and prolonged labor, which can cause the baby to have brain bleeds and suffer oxygen deprivation. When physicians pull too hard on the baby’s head when the shoulder is stuck behind the mother’s pelvis, the nerves in the neck, shoulder and arm area can severely stretch or tear, and this can cause paralysis of the baby’s arm (Erb’s palsy).
- Uterine hyperstimulation: Excessively strong and frequent uterine contractions can result from improper use of Pitocin or Cytotec. Hyperstimulation can cause the uterus to contract too frequently and strongly. Strong and frequent contractions put continuous pressure on the vessels in the uterus and placenta, which impedes blood flow from the placenta to the umbilical cord and baby.
Our Community Involvement: Ann Arbor
University of Michigan: Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine
The University of Michigan’s Division of Neonatal-Perinatal Research and Education comprises neonatologists who care for injured and sick newborn infants, educate future pediatric and neonatology medical professionals, and conduct cutting-edge research in the field of neonatal-perinatal medicine. Through our earmarked donations to Michigan Medicine’s Division of Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine, we specifically support the continuation of research into the prevention, treatment, and mechanisms of hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy (HIE) and newborn brain injury.
C.S. Mott and the Charles Woodsen Research Fund
Jesse Reiter is a financial supporter of C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital and the Charles Woodsen Research Fund. Through his donations to these organizations, he contributes to the treatment and cure of diseases and conditions that impact the lives of children. Read more about Reiter & Walsh, P.C.’s involvement with C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital and the Charles Woodsen Research Fund here.
Trusted Legal Help for Your Ann Arbor Birth Injury Case
The award-winning attorneys at Reiter & Walsh ABC Law Centers have been practicing birth injury law for decades. We have represented Ann Arbor families with children suffering from a variety of serious and permanent mental, emotional and physical injuries and disabilities.
We have helped children throughout the country obtain compensation for lifelong treatment, therapy and a secure future. Our birth injury firm has secured numerous multi-million dollar verdicts and settlements that attest to our success, and we will never charge you a fee until we have won your case. In addition, because we know how difficult these cases can be for everyone involved, we always give personal attention to each child and family we represent.
Michigan birth injury lawyer Jesse Reiter, president of ABC Law Centers, has been focusing solely on birth injury cases since he began his legal career in 1987. His cases involve hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy (HIE), cerebral palsy, neonatal brain damage and a wide variety of other birth injuries, complications and instances of medical malpractice.
Video: Ann Arbor Birth Injury Attorneys Discuss Birth Asphyxia & HIE
Contact Reiter & Walsh Today
The Ann Arbor birth injury attorneys at our law firm focus solely on birth injury cases, which means that we have a thorough knowledge of the complex medical content associated with birth injury cases, plus top-notch, award-winning medical, economic and forensics experts at our side.
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