Nothing is more exciting or stressful than the birthing process. When a woman arrives at the hospital, nurses and doctors will ensure that she is connected to sophisticated medical devices that will monitor a baby’s vital signs and contractions. Because the labor and delivery process can be unpredictable, the doctors and nurses should pay close attention to this information to determine whether a baby is in fetal distress so that they can take necessary action.
Understanding Fetal Distress
Fetal distress takes place when the fetus does not get enough oxygen during the pregnancy, labor or delivery process. Electronic devices, such as an electronic fetal monitor, are hooked to the mother during birth to monitor if the heart rate of the fetus is abnormal. If they see this, they will know that a baby is at risk for oxygen deprivation (hypoxemia) and the devastating injuries that can occur to the baby during the birth process.
How Doctors Monitor Fetal Distress
Medical professionals receive special training to look for the signs of fetal distress. By watching the baby’s heart rate throughout the birth process, they can look for abnormal patterns. If the signs show that the baby is in fetal distress, they must take immediate action to ensure that the child is taken from the birth canal in a quick and safe manner. In some cases, this means ordering an emergency C-section. Some health concerns that doctors and nurses pick up on that contribute to fetal distress include the following:
- Anemia: Mothers should always be checked for anemia throughout their pregnancy. If they are anemic, it means that their body will not be able to provide the right nutrients to the baby, which means that they might not receive the right amount of oxygen. A baby could easily go into fetal distress if this occurs. This is why medical professionals are supposed to monitor a patient’s nutrient levels throughout the pregnancy so that they can ensure that they receive the best nutrition possible to prevent fetal distress from happening.
- Gestational Hypertension: High blood pressure during pregnancy can cause an array of issues, including preeclampsia. If tests show concerns, more tests will be ordered that can show if the baby is receiving adequate blood flow. Many patients will be sent home with rest and medication but, in some cases, an emergency C-section is required.
- Low Amniotic Fluid Levels: If a mother has health concerns including hypertension or diabetes, there could be a decrease in amniotic fluid levels. These cases also occur when a mother goes further than 40 weeks in pregnancy. This is why doctors must always manage and monitor these conditions.
Fetal Distress and Medical Malpractice
Our attorneys at Matzus Law LLC have assisted many mothers who have endured medical negligence on behalf of nurses and doctors during the pregnancy and birthing processes. Birth-related injuries are devastating and life-altering for all involved. Because of this, it is crucial that the baby and the parents receive help from an experienced and dedicated attorney who has handled these claims in the past. Fetal distress can easily lead to many types of harm to a child including paralysis, cerebral palsy, and even death in the most severe cases. It is important to act quickly to ensure that your rights and the rights of your baby are being protected to help navigate the challenging times ahead.
Contact a Pittsburgh Medical Malpractice Attorney for a Consultation About Your Birth Injury Case in Pennsylvania
Were you or a loved one injured due to medical malpractice in Pennsylvania? Then you need to talk to an experienced medical malpractice lawyer as soon as possible for guidance on how to proceed. The Pittsburgh birth injury attorneys at Matzus Law LLC are prepared to assist you with your legal claim. We represent victims of negligent surgeons, doctors, nurses, and pharmacists throughout Pennsylvania, including Pittsburgh, Butler, Cranberry, Greensburg and Washington. Call us today at 412-206-5300 or fill out our online contact form to schedule a consultation. Our main office is located at 310 Grant Street, Suite 3210, Pittsburgh, PA 15219.
The articles on this blog are for informative purposes only and are no substitute for legal advice or an attorney-client relationship. If you are seeking legal advice, please contact our law firm directly.