Brachial Plexus Injury Lawyer San Antonio

San Antonio Brachial Plexus Injury Lawyer

Help from our San Antonio brachial plexus injury attorney when your baby suffers harm during birth

If your newborn has suffered a brachial plexus injury during childbirth, it can have a profound effect on your child's life and your family's future. These injuries, often stemming from medical negligence during labor and delivery, can result in lifelong disabilities and emotional distress. At Pat Maloney: Accident & Injury Attorney, our San Antonio brachial plexus injury attorney can help, fighting to hold negligent healthcare providers accountable and working to secure the compensation you need for your child’s care and well-being.

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What is a brachial plexus injury?

A brachial plexus injury in newborns refers to damage or injury to the network of nerves called the brachial plexus, which controls movement and sensation in the arm and hand. This injury often occurs during childbirth, particularly in cases where there is difficulty delivering the baby's shoulder or if excessive force is applied during the birthing process.

The brachial plexus is a complex network of nerves that originates from the spinal cord in the neck and extends into the armpit region. These nerves control muscle movement and sensation in the shoulder, arm, and hand. During childbirth, the baby's shoulder may become impacted or trapped behind the mother's pelvic bone, leading to stretching, tearing, or avulsion (tearing away from the spinal cord) of the brachial plexus nerves.

Brachial plexus nerve injury occurs in about one to three out of every 1,000 births. Brachial plexus injuries can also lead to conditions like Erb’s palsy or Klumpke’s palsy.

How do brachial plexus injuries happen in San Antonio?

Here are some common ways brachial plexus injuries can happen:

  • Shoulder dystocia: This is a common risk factor during childbirth where the baby's shoulder becomes impacted behind the mother's pubic bone, leading to difficulty in delivery. In cases of shoulder dystocia, excessive force or traction may be applied to the baby's head or shoulder, resulting in stretching, tearing, or avulsion of the brachial plexus nerves.
  • Forceful delivery maneuvers: Healthcare providers may use delivery maneuvers such as traction, rotation, or the use of forceps or vacuum extractors to assist in delivering the baby. If these maneuvers are performed improperly or with excessive force, they can cause injury to the brachial plexus nerves.
  • Large birth weight babies: Babies with a higher birth weight are at increased risk of experiencing shoulder dystocia and subsequent brachial plexus injuries during childbirth.
  • Prolonged labor: Prolonged labor increases the risk of shoulder dystocia and brachial plexus injuries as the baby may be subjected to prolonged pressure and compression during the birthing process.
  • Maternal risk factors: Certain maternal factors, such as gestational diabetes, obesity, and a history of previous shoulder dystocia, may increase the risk of brachial plexus injuries in newborns.

It's important to note that while brachial plexus injuries can occur during childbirth due to factors beyond anyone's control, they may also occur as a result of medical negligence or improper medical care. In such cases, families may choose to pursue legal action to seek compensation for the injury and associated damages. At Pat Maloney: Accident & Injury Attorney, our San Antonio brachial plexus injury attorney can help.

What are the symptoms of brachial plexus injury?

The symptoms of a brachial plexus injury can vary depending on the severity and location of the injury. In newborns, symptoms of a brachial plexus injury may include:

  • The affected arm may have a limited range of motion or may be completely paralyzed.
  • The baby may exhibit weakness in the affected arm, making it difficult to move or control.
  • The baby may have reduced or absent sensation in the affected arm or hand.
  • The affected arm may hang limply by the baby's side, with the elbow extended and the forearm pronated (turned downward).
  • Over time, the muscles in the affected arm may become smaller and weaker due to lack of use.
  • Reflexes in the affected arm, such as the Moro reflex (startle reflex), may be diminished or absent.
  • As the child grows older, they may experience challenges with tasks that require precise movements, such as grasping objects or using utensils.

It's important to note that the severity and extent of symptoms can vary widely depending on the nature of the injury and whether it affects one or more of the nerves in the brachial plexus. Additionally, some babies with brachial plexus injuries may recover with time and appropriate therapy, while others may require more severe interventions such as surgery.

What are the treatments for brachial plexus injury?

Brachial plexus injuries are diagnosed through X-rays, CT scans, and electrodiagnostic exams. Treatment options include both surgical and non-surgical interventions, like:

  • Physical therapy: Physical therapy is a cornerstone of treatment for brachial plexus injuries in babies. Therapists work with the infant to encourage movement and strengthen muscles in the affected arm. Range of motion exercises and gentle stretching can help prevent stiffness and contractures.
  • Passive range of motion exercises: Parents and caregivers are taught how to perform range of motion exercises with the affected arm to maintain flexibility and prevent muscle tightness.
  • Positioning techniques: Proper positioning of the baby during feeding, sleeping, and play can help promote optimal alignment and reduce strain on the affected arm.
  • Splinting and orthotics: In some cases, splints or orthotic devices may be used to support the affected arm and encourage proper alignment while allowing for movement and growth.
  • Nerve surgery (in severe cases): In cases of severe brachial plexus injuries that do not improve with conservative measures, surgical intervention may be considered. Nerve surgery may involve nerve grafts, nerve transfers, or nerve decompression to repair or reconstruct damaged nerves and restore function to the affected arm.
  • Botox injections (for muscle spasms): Botulinum toxin (Botox) injections may be used to temporarily relax overactive muscles and reduce muscle spasms in the affected arm, allowing for improved range of motion and function.

If your child has suffered harm from a brachial plexus injury, talk to our San Antonio legal team today for experienced guidance on what to do next.

What is the value of my child’s brachial plexus injury claim?

Determining the value of a child's brachial plexus injury claim involves various factors and considerations. Factors that will likely influence the value of your claim include the following:

  • The extent and severity of the brachial plexus injury, including whether it resulted in partial or complete paralysis of the affected arm, will significantly impact the value of the claim.
  • The long-term prognosis for the child's recovery and future functioning, including the potential need for ongoing medical treatment, rehabilitation, and therapy, will be taken into account.
  • Past and future medical expenses, including surgeries, therapy, assistive devices, and other necessary medical care, as well as lost wages for parents who must take time off work to care for the child.
  • Non-economic damages may include compensation for the child's pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment of life, emotional distress, and loss of future earning capacity.

Our San Antonio brachial plexus injury lawyer can give you a more specific value after a consultation about your child’s specific and unique case.

Do you have a San Antonio brachial plexus injury lawyer near me?

Pat Maloney: Accident & Injury Attorney is located at 239 E Commerce St. in the center of Downtown San Antonio, TX. We are the owner of one of the most beautiful and historic buildings in San Antonio and there’s plenty of parking nearby. If you cannot travel, we can arrange a phone or video conference, or an in-hospital visit.

Experienced San Antonio brachial plexus injury attorney advocating for your child

Don't wait to take action. Time is of the essence in pursuing a brachial plexus injury claim. Let us fight for your child's rights and help you secure the financial support necessary to provide for their care and future well-being. At Pat Maloney, Accident & Injury Attorney, our San Antonio brachial plexus injury lawyer is here to fight for your child’s rights and work to get the compensation to which your family is entitled. To speak to a trusted brachial plexus injury attorney, call our offices or fill out our contact form today.