Since you're here, we assume that you're considering contacting a malpractice attorney in New Jersey about a potential C-section lawsuit.
If you are considering contacting us, there are a few things you should know about our Firm:
- We offer free, no-obligation case reviews. If you think you have a C-section lawsuit, you have nothing to lose by speaking to us about your case, and much to gain.
- We work on a contingency fee basis. If you retain us to handle your C-section lawsuit, you pay us nothing out of pocket. We only get paid if you obtain compensation.
- Time is of the essence. In New Jersey, the statute of limitations for medical malpractice in New Jersey is generally two years from the date of the injury or two years from the date the injury should have been reasonably discovered. (There's an exception, which we discuss below.)
- We have achieved over 50 million dollars in birth-related medical malpractice cases for our clients.
Having your child become injured as a result of a doctor’s medical malpractice is devastating. When an otherwise healthy baby is subject to another party’s negligence, it can be the most difficult thing in the world to go through for parents.
Our firm has handled countless claims like this for clients. We not only bring experience with the legal process, but we also bring dedicated, compassionate attorneys that know what a challenging time this is.
Read on to find out more about C-section lawsuits in New Jersey.
Types of C-section Claims
There are two primary types of C-section claims: failure to perform a C-section and C-section errors.
When failing to perform a C-section, the mother and baby’s healthcare provider fails to timely perform a C-section that would be medically necessary. The failure to perform the C-section can seriously jeopardize the health of both mother and child.
C-section errors occur when a healthcare provider performs the C-section but doesn’t adhere to an acceptable or expected standard of care.
Failure to Perform a C-Section
When you bring a child into the world, you trust that your healthcare provider is going to give you the best possible medical treatment. But sometimes the healthcare system fails expectant mothers, and whole families suffer as a result.
Many pregnancies have complications that make Cesarean sections medically advisable. Some babies are not in a physical position well-suited to vaginal birth. Other reasons include health problems with the mother, the size of the baby, multiple births (twins, triplets, etc.), or issues with the baby’s health.
In many cases, the so-called “c-section” can be a lifesaving alternative to vaginal birth. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that approximately one in three pregnancies are delivered via Cesarean section.
Unfortunately, however, some healthcare providers fail to recognize the need for a Cesarean as soon as it arises. If medically necessary, Cesarean sections that are not administered in time can result in serious problems for the infant and the mother. These problems can include major health issues and even death.
Sometimes, licensed medical professionals make mistakes that don’t amount to malpractice. After all, most people make mistakes, including healthcare providers. However, when a healthcare provider makes an error during a C-section that causes injury, this is grounds for medical malpractice.
C-section errors, though more commonly affecting infants, can also affect mothers. Sometimes, the injuries from C-section errors are not apparent until years later.
Read on to find out more about the different types of C-section errors.
Types of C-section Errors that Affect Babies
Babies are especially vulnerable during C-sections, as they are generally not full-term. They may experience any number of injuries at the hands of a negligent healthcare provider.
Baby Cut During C-section
If your baby was cut during your C-section, you might have a claim.
This type of injury is called a fetal laceration. Babies can be cut as a result of medical personnel performing improper procedures. Babies can also sustain injuries when they are cut by medical instruments such as scalpels or forceps.
Sometimes when a baby is cut during a C-section, the resulting injuries are minor, and a qualified healthcare provider can treat the baby immediately. In other cases, however, the baby can sustain significant injuries that may require additional surgeries.
Severe fetal lacerations can also become worse over time. For example, sometimes a minor cut at birth can lengthen as the child grows. Often, fetal lacerations can occur on the infant’s face and head, as well as the infant's back.
If your child has suffered a fetal laceration, it’s crucial to get in touch with an experienced birth injury attorney to discuss your options.
If the injury is serious, your child may require additional medical care over time. Monetary recovery from your malpractice claim may help you pay for their treatment.
Infant deaths during C-sections are devastating.
Many people aren't aware that infant death can happen in both planned and unplanned C-section deliveries. Infant death is more likely to occur in C-section deliveries than vaginal births.
When doctors cut into the mother for the C-section, they may cut the baby, as well. When the cut is to the baby’s head, this can pierce their soft skulls, causing death.
Types of C-section Errors that Affect Mothers
Babies aren't the only ones at risk during or after C-sections. Mothers may also experience their own set of complications.
Botched C-section Scar & Hole in C-section Incision
Sometimes, mothers have an unsightly scar from a botched C-section. If the procedure is not done correctly, the botched C-section scar can be difficult to heal.
Even if the scar looks alright initially, mothers can also experience a hole in their C-section incision. Certain surgical techniques can cause either of these problems.
Retained Placenta After C-section
In a healthy delivery, the mother expels the placenta naturally.
Some women are at risk of a retained placenta after a C-section. A retained placenta means that the placenta has stayed inside the woman's body, placing her at an increased risk of infection and possibly even death.
If the healthcare provider doesn't assess and intervene in time, the mother may be seriously harmed.
Nicked Bladder During C-section & Bladder Injury During C-section
If a woman experiences a nicked bladder during a C-section, this can lead to severe complications. Women who have had C-sections before are at higher risk for bladder injury during a C-section.
If the doctor did not perform a timely C-section, this also increases the risk. Even if the healthcare provider discovers the bladder injury immediately, it can still be painful for the mother.
It can lead to a loss of bladder control long-term. If a healthcare provider does not discover the bladder injury or nicked bladder immediately, the mother's life may be in danger.
Infection After C-section & Internal Infection After C-section
Mothers who do not have vaginal deliveries are at an increased risk of infection after their C-section. Infections may happen at the wound site or internally.
With wound infections after a C-section, the mother experiences redness and pus. She may also develop a fever.
With internal infections after a C-section, she may experience flu-like symptoms and a hard, firm lower abdomen. An untreated infection after a C-section can have dire consequences, like a loss of future fertility or even death.
Internal bleeding After C-section
Women who have C-sections may lose more blood on average than women who have vaginal births. Postpartum hemorrhage, or internal bleeding, can happen after a C-section.
Sometimes, one of the mother's organs is accidentally cut. In other cases, the blood vessel stitches may not be properly closed. A nicked or damaged blood vessel can cause internal bleeding after C-section.
This condition can lead to weakness, shock, or even death.
A pulmonary embolism is a blood clot that travels to the lungs.
One study found that women who have a C-section are four times more likely to suffer venous thromboembolism(VTE), a blood clot that starts in a vein, than those who have a vaginal birth. VTEs include pulmonary embolisms and deep vein thrombosis. Pulmonary embolisms may be underdiagnosed in C-sections.
C-section Complications Years Later & Pain After C-Section Years Later
Some mothers may not discover C-section complications until years later, in themselves or their babies. Sometimes even pain after a C-section shows up years later.
In New Jersey, although the statute of limitations is generally two years, it is two years from the date the injury occurred or from the date the patient became aware or reasonably could have become aware of the injury.
C-section Statute of Limitations New Jersey
If you or your baby has suffered an injury from a C-section, unfortunately, you have a limited amount of time available to make a claim.
Like other legal claims for personal injury, C-section claims have a statute of limitations. The statute of limitations is the amount of time in which a plaintiff can bring a claim before it is barred forever.
In general, the statute of limitations for medical malpractice claims in New Jersey is two years from the date the injury occurred or two years from the date the patient became aware or reasonably could have become aware of the injury.
Many patients may not even become aware of their injury within two years of the date the injury occurred. Therefore, medical malpractice claims allow unique timelines for injuries patients may have become aware of later.
In C-section cases, when it is the baby that sustains an injury, the baby's injury could become apparent many years later. That's why in New Jersey when a baby sustains an injury at birth, the case can be brought until the child's thirteenth birthday.
Although there may be several years to bring a C-section lawsuit, you should pursue your claim as soon as you become aware you may have one.
Do I Have A C-section Lawsuit?
In New Jersey, you may have a medical malpractice claim if you can show that your healthcare provider breached the accepted standard of care, and because of that breach, you or your baby sustained an injury. Although many complications can result from having a C-section, not all of them are medical malpractice.
No matter what, if you believe that you or your baby was injured because of a healthcare provider’s negligence during a C-section, it's a good idea to contact an attorney experienced in this area.
A knowledgeable attorney can listen to your story and help you understand whether you may have a viable C-section lawsuit.
Possible C-section Compensation
If you do have a claim for a lawsuit, you may be wondering what types of compensation you could receive from your or your baby’s injuries from a C-section.
Both economic and non-economic damages are available as C-section compensation in these types of suits.
Economic damages may include those to pay for you or your child’s additional medical treatment.
Non-economic damages may include pain and suffering.
Punitive damages, or those designed to punish the responsible party, may be available in rare cases. New Jersey caps the amount of punitive damages available at $350,000 or five times the amount of compensatory damages, whichever is greater.
Your Options After A Botched C-Section
If your healthcare provider failed to perform a c-section when your family needed one, you may be suffering from illness, emotional stress, or even grief. You put your trust in your medical team, and the failure to perform a timely c-section disrespected that trust. But you do not have to suffer in silence.
An attorney may be able to help you pursue a settlement for the pain your family has experienced. Although compensation cannot right the significant wrong of a delayed or missed c-section, it can help with mounting medical bills or lost wages. Most of all, negligent healthcare providers should be held accountable for their actions.
Discuss Your Case with Our Cesarean Attorneys Today
We understand how medical malpractice can devastate a family. We believe that healthcare providers who fail their patients should be accountable. Our experienced attorneys will help you explore your options, possibly including the negotiation of a financial settlement. It is essential to contact an attorney early to ensure the best possible outcome.
Contact the attorneys of O’Connor, Parsons, Lane & Noble today to discuss a healthcare provider’s failure to perform Cesarean sections or their medical malpractice. We can also discuss potential negotiations. Contact us onlineor call us at ((908) 928-9200or 1-800-586-5817.
Results may vary depending on your particular facts and legal circumstances.
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Discuss Your Case with Our Cesarean Attorneys Today
We understand how medical malpractice can devastate a family. We believe that healthcare providers who fail their patients should be held accountable. Our experienced attorneys will help you explore your options, possibly including the negotiation of a financial settlement. It is important to contact an attorney early to ensure the best possible outcome. Contact the attorneys of O’Connor, Parsons, Lane & Noble today to discuss failure to perform Cesarean sections, medical malpractice, and potential negotiations. Contact us online or call us at (908) 928-9200 or 1-800-586-5817.