Mistakes in Fetal Ultrasound Readings Can Have Devastating Effects During Labor & Delivery
Most women will undergo several minimally invasive fetal ultrasounds during her pregnancy to produce images of the inside of her womb and her unborn child. The images, called sonograms, can provide a closer look at a baby’s internal organs, physical features, size, and allow for doctors to screen for maternal and fetal problems that could assist in a safer birth process.
Ultrasounds are routinely used to:
- confirm pregnancy
- determine fetal age and heartbeat
- monitor fetal growth and weight
- abnormalities in the fetus
- examine the baby’s position in the womb
- determine an approximate due date for birth
- identify health problems during pregnancy
- predict possible complications for mother or baby during birth
Trained sonographers will also review for structural irregularities that require further evaluation and notify physicians if ultrasounds appear normal. But when a baby is born with defects that could cause further injury during a birth such as severe brain damage and cognitive and communication skills, parents are left to wonder what went wrong. Did the physician in charge of labor and delivery review the images and the sonographer’s report about any abnormal findings? Or did the technician miss something or forget to review an organ or structure within the fetus?
Providing Optimal Fetal Care Should Be Expected
In many instances, birth trauma can be avoided if doctors recognize and foresee medical risk factors with the use of ultrasounds, exams, medications, and tests. But negligent actions on the part of the physician or technician performing an ultrasound procedure do occur and may be caused by:
- lack of education, experience or proper training on equipment
- old, defective or damaged equipment
- poor or distorted imaging
- misinterpretation of ultrasound results
- misdiagnosis of fetal conditions
- medical record mistake or patient error coding
- failure to follow-up with additional imaging or order further testing
Ultrasounds should also be a proactive measure used to support the monitoring of a mother’s health or to check the fetus’ position in the weeks and days before labor to help prevent birth trauma and injuries.
It’s entirely reasonable for families considering a birth injury lawsuit to feel a range of emotions, including thoughts of helplessness and sadness after a medical professional who was once trusted failed them. If something happens to a mother or an infant before, during, or after the birth process that has caused an injury, legal advice can help provide answers, especially when faced with a lifetime of medical costs and challenges as a result of the incident.
Contact A Chicago Birth Injury Attorney at Levin & Perconti
Levin & Perconti is a nationally renowned law firm concentrating in all types of personal injury, medical malpractice, and wrongful death litigation and are committed to protecting and vindicating the rights of people who are injured by the negligence of others, including mothers and their children.
We have a strong history of successful birth injury cases, including those addressing acts of ultrasound-related mistakes and OBGYN malpractice. Call us today at 312-332-2872 or 877-374-1417, and let a Chicago birth injury attorney at Levin & Perconti help you explore your legal options.