Approximately one or two of every 1,000 babies are born with a condition known as Erb’s Palsy. This condition frequently arises when a newborn’s neck is stretched to the side during a difficult or lengthy delivery. In some children, Erb’s Palsy is classified as a birth injury that could have potentially been avoided if it weren’t for the negligence of the doctor or other medical team members caring for the mom and baby before, during, and after the delivery. While some babies make a full recovery with no residual effects, others aren’t so lucky. If your baby was diagnosed with Erb’s Palsy at birth or shortly after, reach out to an experienced Palm Beach County Erb’s Palsy attorney as soon as possible to discuss your next steps.
What is Erb’s Palsy?
Erb’s palsy is a type of brachial plexus palsy. The brachial plexus is a collection of nerves situated near the neck from which all nerves of the arm originate. The shoulder, arm, and fingers rely on these nerves to provide movement and feeling. The word palsy is a medical term for weakness. As such, brachial plexus palsy birth injuries result in weakness and loss of motion to the shoulder, arms, hands, and fingers.
Most cases of Erb’s palsy involve the nerves of the upper brachial plexus. Infants in this condition may not be able to move their shoulders but might be able to move their fingers. However, the movement restriction will likely be more severe if both the upper and lower nerves are impacted. This is referred to as “global,” or total, brachial plexus birth palsy.
Newborn brachial plexus stretch injuries typically arise during a difficult delivery, involving a large for gestational age baby, a baby being born in the breech position, or after prolonged labor. They may also occur when birth becomes complex, and the person assisting the delivery must deliver the baby quickly and exert some force to pull the baby from the birth canal. With this motion, the baby’s neck could be stretched, causing the brachial plexus nerves also to stretch, resulting in an injury.
Erb’s Palsy Symptoms
Symptoms of Erb’s or brachial plexus birth palsy can vary depending on the severity of the injury and whether it impacts the upper or upper and lower plexus. Symptoms can include:
- Loss of feeling in a single arm
- Weakness in one arm
- Partial or total paralysis of one arm
Recovery and Outlook
Most newborns diagnosed with Erb’s palsy will recover without significant problems, complications, or treatment. Their pediatrician will want to examine them frequently to ensure their nerves are healing and recovering properly. However, nerve growth is extremely slow, and as such, it can take up to two years for the nerves to completely heal and symptoms to resolve. Depending on the severity of the injury and the symptoms, this may present some growth and development challenges for the child.
Treatments for a brachial plexus birth injury include:
- Physical therapy
- Frequent arm movements provided by parents or other caregivers
- Microsurgery to provide a nerve graft or nerve transfer
- Release of joint contractures to allow for more motion
- Tendon transfer, which can improve the child’s ability to raise their arm
How Can a Palm Beach County Erb’s Palsy Lawyer Help You?
Nothing can adequately prepare expecting parents for the potential that their child will be born with Erb’s palsy. When this occurs, new parents often experience a significant amount of stress during a life transition that should be one of the most joyful. An experienced Palm Beach County Erb’s Palsy attorney can help you file an injury claim against the physician or other medical professionals that caused your child’s condition. The attorneys at the Iscoe Law Firm strive to obtain justice for children and families affected by negligent brachial plexus injuries.
When you hire an attorney, they can help make the legal process much easier than if you were to represent yourself. Knowledgeable Palm Beach County Erb’s Palsy lawyers can maximize the potential amount of compensation you might receive by collecting and presenting crucial information in a compelling manner.
Erb’s palsy attorneys can:
- Prove when, how, and why the injury happened
- File a formal legal complaint against those liable for the injury
- Obtain medical documents and testimonies to support your claim
- Seek compensation to help your family pay for related medical bills, therapies, and other injury expenses
Compensation for Erb’s Palsy
If your infant was diagnosed with Erb’s palsy, you might be entitled to receive compensation— often referred to as damages. Damages are the financial representation of the result of another person’s negligence. Suppose your physician or another medical professional was negligent, which caused your child’s Erb’s palsy diagnosis. In that case, you are entitled to receive monetary compensation for your losses, both economic and non-economic.
Your damages might include:
- Past and future medical bills
- Physical therapy
- Surgical bills
- Lost wages
- Physical pain and suffering
- Anxiety or depression
- Mental anguish
- Psychological trauma
- Decreased quality of life
- Loss of enjoyment of life
When you hire a compassionate Palm Beach County Erb’s Palsy lawyer, they can help you identify your damages and ensure they are included in your case. Doing so will help maximize your compensation.
Palm Beach County Erb’s Palsy Lawyer
The best way to know whether you are eligible to file an Erb’s palsy lawsuit is to contact a Palm Beach County Erb’s Palsy attorney to receive a free case evaluation. At this consultation, you will discuss what happened to your child, what the doctors have told you, and what your child’s prognosis is. You will also be asked about your expenses and how this injury has impacted your child’s life and the life of your entire family. Don’t walk away from the compensation you and your child deserve; find out what your case could be worth.
To schedule your complimentary consultation with a well-versed Palm Beach County Erb’s Palsy attorney at the Iscoe Law Firm, call 800 800-6500 today. We are available to take your call 24/7, 365 days per year. It’s also essential to note that your ability to seek monetary recovery is time-barred. If you wait too long to contact an attorney or take legal action, you could lose your right to do so at all. Getting in touch with legal counsel as soon as possible will help preserve your legal rights after an Erb’s Palsy diagnosis.