If you’re expecting a baby, you and your obstetrician (OB) will no doubt have numerous conversations about your child’s health. If an issue arises at any time that signals fetal distress, a Texas OB can take immediate steps to try to protect your health and safety, as well as your baby’s, such as ordering a C-section delivery, if needed. Consequently, if an OB fails to act when a baby shows signs of distress in the womb, serious birth injuries may occur.
While you are not responsible for the actions of your OB, it is helpful to learn as much as you can about three common signs of fetal distress, so that you may be able to recognize when something doesn’t seem right during pregnancy, labor or delivery. Sadly, many birth injuries occur because of medical negligence. If an infant survives such injuries, there may be life-long implications, such as a permanent disability.
Failure to diagnose low amniotic fluid can lead to birth injuries
During prenatal visits, the OB who is monitoring your pregnancy checks to make sure your baby is progressing well in preparation of childbirth. An issue that would cause your doctor great concern, especially in the first two trimesters, is low amniotic fluid. Severe deformities may occur in an infant, as well as other adverse effects, some of which may be life-threatening.
Low amniotic fluid is one of the most common reasons for a C-section delivery. This is particularly relevant if a doctor diagnoses your condition from 37 weeks onward or during labor.
Your child’s heart rate should be regular
If, at any time during pregnancy, labor or delivery, your baby’s heart starts beating too fast or too slow, it can be a sign of fetal distress. Depending on the situation, an OB might ask you to take a non-stress test or might perform an ultrasound to check on the baby’s well-being.
If your baby stops moving, it is a sign of fetal distress
You might notice that your baby is more active in the womb at certain times of day, or you might experience some days when he or she is more active than others. This is normal and is to be expected in a healthy pregnancy. However, if your baby stops moving or movements have greatly slowed and are not increasing again, you will want to discuss the issue right away with your medical team because this is a common sign of fetal distress.
If a Texas OB fails to diagnose fetal distress, resulting in birth injuries to your infant, you can act on your child’s behalf to seek restitution against any and all parties whose negligence was a causal factor toward the damages that occurred.